When you’re remodeling or making upgrades to you home, don’t forget to include improving your home’s energy efficiency to your to-do list. DIY blogger Karah Bunde and her husband are in the middle of a complete overhaul of their 1950s Key West conch home. They’ve been making energy saving a big part of their project. We asked her to share her top energy saving tips with us.
My husband and I are making every effort to update our house in the most energy-efficient way possible, that we can afford right now. So here are a few things we’ve updated that make us feel like we’re on our way to doing our part for the planet. And it doesn’t hurt that all of these options will save us money in the long haul.
#1 – Replace your old light fixtures with LED lights.
There are so many great options to retrofit lights you already have.
As you can see, merely switching four incandescent light bulbs to CFLs can save you a whopping $517 over the lifetime of the bulbs. Imagine the difference if you start switching out each light bulb in your house.
Take a look at just the recessed lighting options in my local Home Depot store. Read my blog post about energy saving options to see which ones we’re incorporating in our home remodel.
#2 – Install dimmer switches.
This was something I was considering for ambiance reasons anyway. Who wants the lights glaring at full blast all the time when just a little mood lighting will do?
And they’re better for my energy bill?
And they come in a variety of options to fit anyone’s style?
Check out how great their installation instructions are (color coded screws and all) in my energy saving blog post.
#3 – Insulate, insulate, insulate!
We’re tackling every single surface of our house. Many walls we’re taking down to the studs, so insulation is a no-brainer. Check out our tutorial on how we started insulating our attic. We were surprised that it didn’t take as long as we thought it would. But we live by our tip of what time of day is best to tackle this project. :)
The Home Depot offers some great blown-in insulation options as well for homes where you don’t have access to lay insulation between the studs, by the way.
#4 – Sealant to the rescue!
So, we are not only updating every single interior surface of our house … but we’re tackling the exterior as well. I mean, when you start with this what’s a girl to do really?
Faux brick, squatty windows and pink paint no more. We’re in the process of installing new siding around the front part of the house, and one thing I hadn’t expected was that I would need to seal all of the seams under every single board and where each siding board meets the trim.
Not only will the Dynaflex Indoor/Outdoor Sealant give our new siding a more finished look, but it will also stop any drafts from making their way into our house. And it’s paintable and waterproof … great for use indoor or out.
#5 – Install a tankless water heater.
Now, here is where I curse our stinkin’ budget and say we haven’t done this already, but we’re saving up to invest in a tankless water heater. I always knew it would save me space and only heat water that we’re using, but now it’s going to save me money, too!?!?! I need one!
Hopefully you found a few tips here that inspire you to make a few upgrades today. Get started by learning about The Home Depot’s Eco Options program here, and take the Efficiency Audit here. Let’s do this!
Karah describes herself as “a hopeless DIYer, ambitious crafter and resourceful thrifter.” Follow her adventures fully renovating her Key West conch home on her blog the space between. Check out the scary before video and see a running balance of all of the renovation expenses, too.