That number is not just a wake-up call for Louisiana residents – it’s also an opportunity for you as a Louisiana homeowner. With some smart investments and lifestyle changes, you can cut your home energy bills by 10, 20, or even 30 percent year after year in any season.
Here are the 10 most cost-effective ways to cut your energy bills in the year ahead:
Invest in a home energy efficiency audit – A professional home energy audit will tell you where to get the best bang for your buck efficiency-wise. It will often pay for itself in a single year.
Plug air leaks – Sealing air leaks around windows and doors – as well as in your basement, attic, and other vulnerable spots in your Louisiana home – can take a surprising bite out of your monthly energy bills.
Insulate your attic – About half of U.S. homes are under-insulated, according to the Alliance to Save Energy. That doesn’t only apply to homes in cold weather areas, since insulation assists both home heating and cooling.
Seal your ducts – In a forced air heating or cooling system (if you have vents, you have one), ducts carry conditioned air to different parts of the home. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that about one-fifth of this air escapes through leaks. Professional duct sealing will take care of this problem.
Install a programmable thermostat – Why pay to cool or heat the house when no one is home or when you’re asleep? A programmable thermostat’s automation features can save you 10 percent or more on your annual energy bills.
Invest in efficient windows and effective window treatments – Replace old, leaky windows with double-pane, EnergyStar™-rated windows and you will save money and make your home less drafty and more comfortable. While you’re add it, swap out your hollow doors for solid ones, too. Window treatments can make a big difference, too – choose options that can easily block sunlight in the summer and insulate against heat loss in the winter.
Add storm windows – Storm windows can be an economical alternative to complete window replacement; if your windows are in relatively good shape, a storm window can cut down air leaks dramatically.
Replace electric water heaters with propane water heaters and install low-flow aerators and shower heads – Your water heater accounts for about 20 percent of your monthly energy bill, so reducing hot water use is a worthy home efficiency goal. Swap out your electric water heater with a propane model and you could save 30 percent on your water heating bill – up to 50% if you use a tankless model. Low-flow aerators (the screw on tips of your faucets) and shower heads can cut your hot water usage in half without affecting your comfort or water pressure.
Maintain your home comfort equipment – Home heating systems become less efficient over time – about five percent efficiency less efficient every year if you skip annual maintenance (hint: don’t!).
Replace old heating equipment with high-efficiency models – If your home heating equipment is 10 years old or more, it’s usually more cost-effective to replace rather than repair it. Installing a new, high-efficiency propane heating system could save you 30 percent or more on your heating bills – enough to offset the cost of installing a new unit in just a few years.
Looking for other ways to save money on home heating and cooling systems? We can help! Contact us today to learn more, or to get a FREE estimate on a new home comfort equipment for your Louisiana (or Arkansas!) home.