Most home improvements are carried out to make us more comfortable and to make life a little easier when we’re at home. Some of them are purely for aesthetic reasons, but with many we are trying to cut the cost of our utility bills. The improvements you make do not have to be major, there are some that for just a few euros can make your home more energy efficient.
Install A Heating Thermostat You Can Program
You will find programmable thermostats in most DIY stores and they are not very expensive. This will let you pre-set times and temperatures, so heating does not get left on when not necessary. They are able to keep your home to within 2 or 3 degrees of a constant level of heat, and are said to be one of the most energy efficient ways of reducing your utility bills.
If you suddenly need more or less heat, there is usually an override button that will let you adjust the temperature, but it will go back to the pre-set temperatures afterwards.
Upgrade Your Lighting
Upgrading your lighting can give your home a newer look without too much effort. Switching to LED lights, which are more energy efficient, allow you to make adjustments to the level of lighting, which you can even perform from an app on your smartphone if you want.
As well as being more energy efficient, they need replacing less often, the lifespan of some being as long as 10 years. It speaks volumes that most councils responsible for roads are changing street lighting to LED for the very same reasons.
Insulating Attics Will Help Too
It depends on the intended use of your attic for as to what’s the best way to insulate. Speaking to experts on insulating attics is the thing to do, as they will have the knowledge and expertise to make sure it suits your needs.
Regardless of whether you are considering attic insulation because you want to make sure the goods you store are protected from cold and damp, or whether you want to convert your attic an extra another room, or your only concern is reducing your utility bills, they will be aware of the way that will be the best for you.
Many homeowners opt for spray foam insulation because it is so flexible and can get into all the small and awkward places that are difficult to reach.
Insulating attics has more effects than simply helping to keep your house warm. In the summer, if the sun is beating down on your roof it will keep some of the heat out of the house, helping to keep you cooler.
If you decide to sell or rent your house, insulating attics helps to give your property a higher BER rating. Apart from benefitting from the insulation yourself, it will be a plus for you when the time comes for you to sell.
The Irish government want to encourage people to make their homes more energy efficient, and they offer grants towards to the cost of insulating attics.
Update Your Kitchen Appliances
If you are having a new kitchen fitted all your appliances will be replaced as part of the installation. However, even if you’re not, you should still consider updating some of your appliances. For instance, a dishwasher more than 4 or 5 years old will use 10 gallons of water for a full cycle. Newer dishwashers only use between 6 and 7 gallons. Over a week, if you use your dishwasher once a day that’s a saving of up to 30 gallons of water. Over the year that amounts to a lot of water saved, and you should notice the difference in your water bills.
To some extent the same principle applies to washing machines and kettles. The older they are, the less energy efficient they become.
Install Double Glazing
If your home has single glazed windows and doors, they are probably old and drafty. Although you can seal some of the cracks around them with drafting tape, the best solution is to install new double glazed ones.
Double-glazing has several advantages, including:
- A warmer home in winter – Double-glazing will keep somewhere between 50% and 70% more heat in your home than single glazing. This in turn will reduce the amount of heat you need and lower your utility bills.
- A cooler home in summer – The extremes of heat are more controlled with double glazed windows, so your home will stay cooler in the summer months.
- Reduces condensation – Condensation can be a real problem for homeowners, particularly in older properties. It can cause mould and mildew and rot timber frames, and it’s not any good for your family’s health.
- Reduces outside noise levels – the level of noise you hear from outside will be reduced with double-glazing.
As well as making your home look better, be more comfortable, and reducing bills having your widows and doors double-glazed will enhance its resale value. Even older properties can have their outer appearance improved with new windows and doors, and just as with insulating attics, double-glazing will increase your BER rating.
Home Improvements You Cannot See
Quite often, when people are thinking of home improvements, they are considering things like new kitchens and bathrooms, or maybe having a conservatory added. These are all very visual things that will make your home more pleasant, and easier to sell, if that is your intention.
However, some of the most cost effective home improvements are the ones that are not immediately obvious, such as attic insulation.
At Reilly Spray Foam we have been insulating attics for several years. We only ever use top quality materials and qualified installers, so why not give us a call today on 01 969 5661. You will not be putting yourself under any obligation by having a chat with our experts, and they will be able to give you a free quote for the cost of your attic insulation.