In 2019, the average electricity bill for residential property owners in the United States was $115 per month. However, there are many things in your home that can affect the amount you pay on energy bills each month.
If you own an old home, it is likely that your energy bills are higher than you expected. Luckily, there are ways that you can reduce your energy usage in an old home.
Do you need help saving money on energy bills in old homes? Keep reading this guide for the top changes you can make to save money on energy bills!
Do an Energy Audit
One of the first things you can do to reduce energy bills is to get an energy audit for your home. Many energy companies will provide a free energy audit each year.
It determines your home's energy efficiency and can provide you with essential information about your energy usage. During this audit, you can inspect the energy flows in your home to see where you are using the most energy.
This will give you ideas for where to cut back.
For example, a professional energy auditor may be able to identify air leaks in your HVAC system that are wasting energy. Or, they can help you check the insulation in your home.
This is a great starting point to reduce your energy bill!
Be Conscious of Energy Usage
Getting an energy audit will not benefit you at all unless you implement changes to your energy usage. You must become more conscious of your energy usage so you can find ways to improve.
If your audit finds that you are wasting a lot of energy on heating and cooling, you can start by adjusting the temperatures in your home to use your HVAC system less often.
You can also become more aware of when you are using unnecessary energy. For example, you can start by keeping the lights off when you are not around or when you are in a different room.
Becoming more conscious of your energy usage will help you make small changes to improve.
Use Smart Heating Controls
Another simple change that can greatly impact your energy usage is installing smart heating controls in your home. There are many new types of technology that you can use that make it easy to reduce your energy consumption.
For example, an energy-efficient thermostat allows you to accurately control the temperature in your home.
Adding these smart heating controls will make it easier to track your energy usage and minimize your HVAC costs.
Windows are one of the biggest problems when it comes to energy efficiency in your old home. Often, these windows are old and don't have the newest technology, which makes them drafty.
Drafty windows let the hot air inside in the summer months and cold air inside in the winter months, which makes your HVAC system work twice as hard to regulate the temperature in your home.
Replacing the windows in your home with energy-efficient alternatives can significantly reduce your utility bills! If you cannot afford new windows in your home, there are other ways that you can improve old windows.
For example, you can reduce the draftiness by sealing the edges of your window or installing window film.
Similarly, you can replace your doors to save money on your energy bills. If old doors are not fit perfectly in your home, they can let drafts into your home. Plus, older homes often use doors that are not energy efficient and result in energy losses.
Replacing your front doors with insulated steel or fiberglass doors will help you improve the insulation in your home and will give you a tighter fit to reduce draftiness!
Replace Older Appliances
Appliances in homes represent nearly 10% of your energy bill. Old appliances also tend to waste more energy than newer alternatives. If you move into an old home, buying new appliances can make your home much more energy-efficient.
Replacing old appliances with energy-efficient ones will help you save money and can also help you reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
When you are looking for new appliances, you should find options that have an Energy Star Rating. Appliances with this rating meet federal guidelines for energy efficiency and use less energy.
While new appliances are a big investment, they will save you even more money in the long run.
Improving the insulation in an older home is one of the best things you can do to reduce your heating and cooling bill. Many old homes were created without insulation in the walls.
Insulation works to keep your house warm in the winter and to keep it cool in the summer. If you improve the insulation in your old home, it will greatly improve the energy efficiency of your house and can help you reduce your energy consumption.
You can start by insulating the attic in your home. It may be best to hire a professional to install attic insulation to ensure that it is done correctly. Plus, this is an investment that will save you money, so it is completely worth it!
You can also hire a company to add wall insulation to your home, although this is a much larger project.
Seal Air Leaks
Many older HVAC systems will also have leaks that make the air conditioner and heater much less efficient. Instead of coming out of your vents, the air from your HVAC may be released outside.
Finding and sealing these leaks will make your HVAC system much more efficient which will reduce your energy bills.
Often, you can tell if your ducts are leaving if you have uneven heating or cooling in your home and if certain rooms in your home are difficult to heat or cool. There are also some visual signs of air leaks, like crushed or kinked air ducts.
Sealing these leaks with duct caulk or replacing the broken ducts will make your home much more energy-efficient.
Fix Drafty Floorboards
Drafty floorboards are another common cause of wasted energy in an old home. While the floors may look perfectly functional, they may have gaps between the floorboards that allow the air in your home to seep outside.
In extreme cases, these drafty floorboards can be as serious as leaving a small door or window open all day.
Luckily, you can easily fix drafty floorboards with sealant strips. These fit between the floorboards and keep air from escaping. Another simple solution is to lay down a large area rug to add extra insulation to your home during the winter.
Switch to LED Lights
Lighting your home uses a significant amount of energy, especially in the winter months when it gets dark earlier. Finding ways to reduce this energy usage can make an old home more energy-efficient.
Not only do you need to be conscious of turning off lights in your home, but you may also want to switch to LED lighting. These lights last for tens of thousands of hours without needing to be replaced.
Simply switching to LED light bulbs can instantly lower your energy consumption without having to keep your lights off.
Utilize Natural Energy
Finally, utilizing natural energy is an easy way to boost the energy efficiency of an older home! This is a helpful tip for any homeowner that wants to save money on their energy bills.
For example, you can reduce the need for artificial lighting by using natural light whenever possible. Rather than using a lamp or overhead light, you can open the blinds or curtains in your home to let in the light from the sun.
In the summer months, this will keep your home well-lit for most of the day.
You can also use natural energy to heat and cool your home! In the winter, you can open the blinds to let in the sunlight to your home. This way, you can reduce the need for a heater in your home.
Similarly, you can open your windows in the early mornings or in the evening during the summer to let in the cool morning air. This way, your house will cool down without having to use the air conditioner.
Need Help Saving Money on Energy Bills in Old Homes?
Even though old homes naturally use more energy, there are many simple changes you can make to make your home more energy-efficient. Following these tips can help you save money on bills and avoid getting a high energy bill in the future!
Do you need help saving money on energy bills in old homes? SuperiorPRO can help! We specialize in exterior renovations and can help you replace your windows, doors, roof, and more.
Contact us today to learn more about our services and to get a free quote!