SHARP HOME

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Don't let your house give your money away!


With Alberta's early onset of cold weather, we got to thinking about the fact that heating bills are likely to go up earlier than usual as a result...and that got us thinking about the various resources we pay for in our homes, and what we can do to reduce their respective costs. If there are portions of your home that are in need of repair, and if these areas go unchecked, your house could be giving away your hard earned money. Here are a few ways to make sure that Chez Toi doesn't get away with such behaviour.

Replace old windows – if your windows are old, they may be allowing the cold to penetrate your home at a faster rate than usual. This is especially true if your home is over twenty years old. One very simple criteria that your windows should meet in order to avoid heat loss is that there should be a double pane. Single panes don't do enough to insulate the air in your home and protect it from the air outside.

Unplug unused appliances – anything occupying an electric socket, regardless of whether or not it is currently in operation, is consuming energy. You can avoid such waste by unplugging appliances when you're not using them. Items like hair dryers, electric kettles, toasters, phone chargers, and coffee makers, are good places to start.

Consider caulking – Don't underestimate the power of small cracks and crevices to substantially lower your home's efficiency. Sealing off these openings could save you around 10% in energy consumption—hardly a number to sniff at. This is a project that is very low cost, not particularly time consuming, and requires no expertise. All you need is a caulking gun, and the caulk to load it with. Running this treatment along the edges of your windows will give you a good seal to keep the draft out. And you needn't worry: when the weather turns mild again, and you're ready to open your windows, the caulking will come off with just a little bit of pulling on your part, with no damage whatsoever to the areas it was applied to.

Don't ignore a leaky toilet tank – alas, the nuisance of that ongoing sound of a tank trying to refill itself to no avail isn't the only drawback of a leaky toilet tank. You're losing water as well. Putting off the repair can make it so that you become accustomed to it, and forget to look after it long term. Avoid unnecessary loss by making repairs in a timely fashion.

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