6 Energy-Efficient Upgrades for Your Home

Posted November 22, 2023 by in Lifestyle
energy efficient

Energy costs are consistently climbing in New York City and Long Island, and they’re not slowing down anytime soon. By 2025%, the energy prices are expected to soar up further with a 6.6% increase in overall utility bills. While New Yorkers are already struggling to pay their energy bills, it’s high time to find ways to cut back on our energy use.

Winters are fast approaching in Long Island, and temperatures will soon drop below 20. You want to make sure your Long Island home remains cozy and comfortable despite the harsh weather conditions outside, and that too, without breaking the bank. 

Fortunately, there are some simple and cost-effective ways to reduce your energy consumption without compromising your comfort. Keep reading to discover seven energy-efficient home upgrades that can keep your energy bills under control while maintaining a comfortable living environment. 

  1. Repair or Upgrade Your Home’s HVAC

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems account for more than half of the total energy consumption in your home. Rigorous use during winter and summer seasons in Long Island, as well as lack of maintenance, can affect your HVAC’s input/output efficiency and overall performance. If your HVAC system has blocked filters and dirty coils, it may have to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors. Moreover, HVAC air ducts may develop leaks and cracks over time, which allows conditioned air to escape and increases energy consumption.

If you want to ensure that your HVAC system keeps operating at peak efficiency, you need to maintain and repair it regularly. Find the best HVAC company in Long Island City, NY, and schedule regular maintenance checkups for your HVAC system. A credible HVAC repair and maintenance company will ensure that your HVAC system is operating efficiently. They will identify any potential problems early on before they start multiplying your energy bills or causing a costly repair. A well-maintained HVAC system will use less energy without any compromise on performance. 

If your HVAC is outdated, replace the older models with more energy-efficient ones. Energy-efficient models come with advanced features like programmable thermostats, variable air volume systems, and air-side economy modifiers. Programmable thermostats allow you to control your home’s temperature even when you’re away from home or asleep. 

  1. Change Your Primary Power Source to Solar Energy

The main reason behind increasing energy costs is depleting fossil fuel and gas reserves. This is why the world is increasingly shifting to reusable energy resources like solar energy. Instead of relying solely on your local power grid, it’s time to change your primary power source to solar energy. 

Installing solar panels not only helps you reduce your carbon footprint, but it’s also a worthwhile long-term investment. You can convert your home into a net-zero energy zone with the right quantity of solar panels and smart energy practices. 

Best of all, converting to solar energy helps you significantly reduce your energy bills and takes the energy-saving game up a notch. 

  1. Install Energy-Efficient Windows

Traditional windows with a single layer of glass tend to lose or gain heat faster and transfer it to the indoor environment. As a result, your HVAC keeps running to maintain indoor temperature. Despite installing an energy-efficient HVAC, your energy bills continue climbing, especially during peak summers and winters. 

Upgrading your windows to energy-efficient models has a huge impact on your home’s total energy usage. These windows have a dual glass layer with adequate insulation, which helps regulate your home’s internal temperature and minimizes the effect of external temperature. Low-emissivity (low-E) double- or triple-pane windows are another great option to increase energy efficiency and reduce heat transmission. They trap heat inside during the winter and reflect it away during the summer. 

  1. Insulate Your Home

If your home isn’t properly insulated, all your efforts to enhance energy efficiency will go in vain as the outside temperature keeps affecting the indoor temperature. Insulating your home is perhaps the most cost-effective long-term investment that helps you regulate temperatures inside your home and conserve energy. Proper insulation acts as a barrier between the outside temperatures and indoor living spaces, which restricts heat transfer and helps you maintain optimal temperature without consuming extra energy. 

Make sure all the walls that constitute the boundary of your home are properly insulated. Besides walls, it’s also important to insulate attics, crawl spaces, and basements. There are a variety of options available to insulate your home, including batt insulation, blown-in insulation, and rigid foam insulation. 

  1. Seals Air Leaks

Air leaks around the windows, doors, and other openings like skylights and exhausts are the main culprits behind significant heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer. As a result, your HVACs consume more energy and work harder to maintain desired temperatures. 

If you notice your energy bills rising or not coming down even after installing energy-efficient appliances, it’s time to check all the openings for gaps, cracks, and air leaks. Use caulks to fill in any cracks or large gaps around the window or door frames, and install weatherstripping around the doors and windows to seal smaller gaps.

  1. Upgrade to Energy Efficient Appliances 

Energy-efficient appliances can drastically reduce your energy consumption and cut down your energy bills. Moreover, energy-efficient dishwashers and washing machines conserve water without compromising performance.  

If you’re planning to upgrade your home appliances, look for the ones with ENERGY STAR certification. Such appliances use superior-quality materials and strictly follow energy efficiency guidelines, which helps you reduce energy consumption by up to 50%. Most energy-efficient models are also environmentally friendly, which means you can play your part in making a positive impact on the environment while minimizing energy use. 

The above-mentioned energy-efficient upgrades are your first step towards sustainable living. Besides making changes to your home, you must engage in responsible use of energy. It’s important to make some simple changes in your daily habits, such as turning off lights when leaving a room and unplugging electronics when you’re not using them.