Energy Efficiency is more than just dollars and cents
While it’s true that renovations done to help improve the energy efficiency of your home will potentially save you money on your energy bill, here are a few other reasons we think energy efficiency upgrades are important.
A properly insulated home loses less heat in the winter and absorbs less heat in the summer. Typical attics in homes from the 70s and 80s, if they haven’t been upgraded, usually have an R-value of around 10. With little insulating value in the attic, winters will feel much colder because the heat your furnace is generating is escaping through the attic. Likewise, in the summer, heat is allowed to penetrate the attic and warm up your house a lot quicker. By upgrading your attic to R 50, your home will feel warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. Why your attic? It’s the biggest bang for your buck without having to remove any wall coverings.
Do you live in an area of town where there is a lot of traffic noise? Do sounds of footsteps echo from the main floor through the basement ceiling? Insulation also acts as sound deadening barrier. New windows can help with outside noise as well. Triple pane windows offer more sound deadening that the dual pane windows found on older homes.
Although your home’s insulation won’t prevent a house fire, some insulation products on the market offer a measure of fire resistance. This resistance can help to slow the spread of a fire, which could provide you with a few extra minutes to get you and your family out of your home. Roxul’s product, Safe’n’Sound, used on the interior walls of your house, is an insulation product made of stone and it can withstand temperatures hundreds of degrees higher than conventional insulation. In addition, Roxul’s products are inert, meaning that they don’t give off any toxic gas when exposed to heat.
If your home is still equipped with a manual thermostat, you might be spending a lot of time visiting that thermostat to adjust the temperature. And, if you forget to adjust it before going to bed, you might be spending more money on heating and cooling than you planned on. By installing a programmable thermostat, you can set it once per season and not have to worry about it.
Okay. Savings on your energy bill is really important. It can be hard to pinpoint exactly how much money you’ll save on your energy bill every month because every home is different. Spending the exact same amount of money on two different homes will yield different savings. With that in mind, should you invest in better energy efficiency now? The answer is yes. Not only will you start to see savings on your energy bill, but that investment will also be offset due to inflation. You’re spending 2013 dollars to save money by paying smaller 2014 bills.
Where do I start? Basements and attics are a good place to start, as well as windows and doors. If you’re considering doing some other home renovations, such as a new exterior or a full kitchen remodel, it could also be a good idea to upgrade the insulation in that area of your home while that area is accessible.
If you’re in the Greater Edmonton area and are looking for a contractor for you renovation project, visit our website at www.nordalta.com/contact/ to find information on how to contact us. We’d be happy to speak to you about what we can do to get the ball rolling on your next home or office project. You can also leave comments with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Breault is a project coordinator for Nord Alta Construction. You can find the company website at www.nordalta.com. You can also find Michael and Nord Atla Construction on facebook at www.facebook.com/NordAltaConstruction, on twitter at www.twitter.com/Nordalta, and on LinkedIn.
Robert Breault is the president and owner of Nord Alta Construction. You can find the company website at www.nordalta.com. You can also find Robert and Nord Alta Construction on facebook at www.facebook.com/NordAltaContruction and on LinkedIn.