5 Easy Projects for Instant Home Energy Savings
Saving energy might not be a concern we’re all thinking about, but it’s something that everybody can take part in. It doesn’t have to be a long, slow, expensive process if you know what you’re doing and how much the small steps can add up – that’s why I have teamed up with BUILT/ to bring you five easy projects for instant home energy savings.
Insulate your water heater
Something as simple as a heat-insulating blanket can have a major impact on how much energy goes into your hot water – with a few careful measurements and some tape to hold it in place, you can easily wrap the blanket around most of the heater’s exposed areas, which can cut down idle heat use by up to 45%, as well as reducing your water heating costs by over 15%.
Seal air leaks
If you can work out where drafts and cold air currents are leaking in, you can easily seal up whatever cracks you can find. Caulk or polyurethane sealants – both easily available – can be used to block up any leaks and keep the hot air inside, where it belongs.
Bubble wrap windows
Some houses have unnecessary windows, like glazed windows in bathrooms, that can sometimes be an escaping point for heat. By sticking or taping a layer of bubble wrap across the window, you create an extra layer of insulation that also lets light through –however this may distort your view, meaning this method is best reserved for windows that don’t really need to do anything more than light up a room. Even better, you can simply pull off the bubble wrap when a warm summer rolls around.
Evaporative Air Cooler
Building an evaporative air cooler can help cut down on power that would run air conditioning units, and all it requires is a fan, some water and a shallow bowl or container to hold them in. As the fan blows downwards into the container, the water will evaporate incredibly slowly, and the water vapour will cool the air without making it humid.
Evaporative air coolers can be incredibly cheap, and are as complex as you choose to make them, with so many building supplies online and in store, coolers can be both a quick fix and a long-term tool depending on how you want to construct and use them.
If your home has an attic, which many older buildings likely will, building an insulated cover for the access stairs or ladder may save a major amount of potentially-lost heat. This cover can be as simple as a blanket nailed to the back of the entrance hatch, which would be the easiest place for heat to escape in most cases – preventing this heat from entering the attic at all significantly reduces the amount that can leave through the roof, making heating more efficient regardless of the circumstances or the time of year.