Energy Efficient Repairs give a Great Return
If you had $2000 to invest today, would you buy an annuity that paid you $80 / month over a 10 year period? That would pay you back $9600 over 10 years.
Well, if your average combined utility costs are $400 / month or more today, that is the return on investment you could get if you performed a home energy tune-up on your house and did the simple, cost effective repairs that give you the biggest bang for your buck. I am not talking about replacing windows or doors. I am talking about basic weatherization improvements that almost every house can take advantage of today.
The Low Hanging Fruit of Weatherization
1. Sealing the gaps in the shell of your house
Typically, this is the least expensive work and gives the greatest return on your dollar. Sealing means plugging holes in your attic and crawl space.
- Attic access stairs.
- Can lights going into the attic.
- Chases running between walls.
- Bonus room knee walls.
- Holes in the ground floor into your crawl space where plumbing pipes or electrical wires are run.
- Door and windows calking.
Removing these gaps in the shell of your home would be like closing 2 wide open windows that were permanantly open.
2. Insulation Issues. Your attic and crawl space are the biggest culprits and the easiest to improve on. Bonus room knee walls can also be a major issue. Typically, blown insulation in the attic is the easiest improvement, but properly sealing the attic first will more than double the efficiency of the insulation improvements.
3. Duct sealing. We have seen completely disconnected ducts blowing conditioned air into attics or crawl spaces or pulling air from these areas into the house. This can be a huge health issue as well as a energy wasting issue. A simple pressurization test of your heating and air conditioning system can show were we can drastically improve the effectiveness of the system.