Older homes in Richmond offer charm, character, history, and many other attractive features, but these types of properties are among the least energy-efficient. When these lovely homes were built, there were no guidelines or standards for reducing energy consumption. As a result, homeowners deal with high energy bills, uneven temperatures, and many other frustrating issues. Fortunately, the experts at Affordable Service Solutions Heating & Air Conditioning can help you reduce your utility bills and improve indoor comfort. Here are seven ways that you can make your older Richmond house more energy-efficient.
1. Seal Doors and Windows
One of the costliest ways that older homes produce energy loss is through small openings around doors and windows. Sealing these areas is an easy DIY project that you can do over a weekend. For the windows, caulk around the frame, and check the weatherstripping in the fittings. Remove any old paint, caulk, and weatherstripping, and then clean the surfaces. Apply new caulk and weatherstripping, making sure that the openings are completely filled in and sealed. Doors typically require only weatherstripping, but you can fill in any remaining openings with caulk as well. Be sure to do all exterior doors, along with those leading to the garage and basement.
2. New Insulation
Insulation is a cost-effective way to boost energy efficiency in older houses. If you can’t afford to replace all of the insulation, start with the attic. This is the area of your property where the most energy loss occurs.
3. Repair the Floors
Many older homes in the Richmond area have wood floors. Over time, the wood contracts and ages to create gaps between the boards. Air comes through these gaps from outside and costs you more in heating and cooling costs. You can seal the openings with a special tape that fits between the floorboards and protects the aesthetics of your wood floors. We also recommend that you use area rugs throughout your residence to further reduce airflow between the boards.
4. Hang Some Curtains
Another problem that increases energy use in older properties is thin glass windows. The glass is at the same temperature as the outdoor air. The heat or cold of the glass radiates into the air around the interior surface, and this may cause warm spots during the summer and cold spots during the winter. If you aren’t ready to replace your windows, heavy curtains can help. This simple fix prevents the temperature of the window glass from radiating into the room. Heavy curtains also help control drafts around your windows.
5. Solar Energy
Solar energy options have become more affordable in recent years, and you can find designs that fit well with the aesthetics of your older Richmond home. Installing panels to offset even a small portion of your electricity use can boost efficiency and save you money over time. You can use those savings to add more panels, further reducing your dependence on electricity.
6. Repair Ducts
The ductwork in houses is prone to damage that allows heated and cooled air to escape into the walls, ceilings, and outside areas of your home. Sealing ducts closes all of the openings in your duct so that all heated and cooled air is delivered into the rooms and not released into uninsulated spaces. This reduces run time for your HVAC equipment and translates into energy savings.
7. Upgrade Your Equipment
One of the best investments that you can make in your older Richmond home is upgrading your HVAC equipment, including your thermostat and furnace. Modern thermostats are designed to maintain comfortable temperatures while reducing run times for your heating and cooling system. A new furnace introduces features that weren’t available when your house was built. The experts at Affordable Service Solutions Heating & Air Conditioning can help you find the best HVAC equipment for your budget. You can choose from single-stage, two-stage, and variable-speed models. Our technicians can also help you decide if it’s time to switch to a new fuel source for your heating and cooling needs. We recommend that you schedule routine maintenance with one of our technicians as well. Our team members will replace filters and perform repairs that keep your older equipment performing at the best possible level.
Learn More About Energy Efficiency for Older Homes
Since 2012, Affordable Service Solutions Heating & Air Conditioning has provided top-notch heating and cooling services for residents of Richmond and the surrounding areas. We understand the unique challenges of living in an older house, and we can help you find ways to save on your utility costs. Be sure to ask about our 24/7 emergency repair services, too. Contact Affordable Service Solutions Heating & Air Conditioning today for more information!