The old folks used to say “A stitch in time saves nine.” What they meant was: go ahead and fix that little tear now so that it doesn’t become a big tear down the line, requiring more work and effort. We feel the same way when it comes to building new homes. Doing it right now, means you don’t have to re-do it later.
We’ve compiled these five tips to help you build a home with utility bills that are much lower than what you’d have in a conventional home. A well-planned home that combines energy efficiency and renewable energy can save you more than $1000 each year!
1. Insulate. Of course there’s no question about insulation. You’re going to do it. You live in Louisiana. But are you going to do it right? Don’t skimp on insulation. More than any other factor of your new home, this one can drastically reduce your energy waste and cost over the lifetime of your house. Choose the best insulation and have it installed by certified contractors like ours at Sunlight Contractors. We recommend Gaco WallFoam. Its high R-value resists heat and its air sealing properties ensure that your home is enveloped in insulation. While loose-fitting cellulose and fiberglass insulations allow air to move through your home, spray foam insulation provides dense layers that help your home stay the perfect temperature year round, reducing your HVAC needs.
2. Install high efficiency windows and doors. A house just isn’t a house without them. Exterior doors welcome new guests to your home, but they can also usher in heat and cold. Likewise, windows can let in more than a view of the outdoors. New energy efficient windows and doors are designed with insulation in mind, which means they’ll work with the rest of your house to lower utility bills and wasted energy. New doors made with steel, vinyl, and fiberglass and filled with foam insulation resist warping and cracking and offer weather resistance in addition to being beautiful and energy efficient.
3. Select an ENERGY STAR® qualified HVAC system. You’ve installed spray foam insulation and high efficiency doors and windows, which means you’ve changed your HVAC needs. Because your home is air-tight, you can purchase a smaller unit, but since more than half of a home’s energy costs go towards heating and cooling, make sure that its an ENERGY STAR® qualified system to ensure that it fits into your energy efficient home.
4. Install a solar water heater. Heating water is another high energy cost. Whether you’re washing dishes, the car, or your laundry, relying on gas or electricity means a high utility bill. Our customers who have switched to solar water heaters, which relies primarily on the passive heat of the sun, have told us over and over again about the savings they’ve seen on their utility bills after having the system installed.
5. Go solar! More and more people are going solar as prices drop and the government continues to sweeten the tax incentives for renewable energies. Homes with solar panels save $1000 or more per year depending on the size of the system. Why not use the very sun you’re escaping in the air conditioned halls of your home to actually power the air conditioner? Solar panels can do that!
If you’re a new homeowner working towards a green home that saves green, get in touch with Sunlight Contractors and let us help you get off to a great start!
Main Office: Sunlight Contractors, LLC 2323 Bainbridge St #110, Kenner, LA 70062 (504) 222-2082
New Orleans location: Sunlight Contractors, LLC 650 Poydras St, Suite 1400, Rm 33, New Orleans, LA 70130 (504) 302-0058
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