Home renovations and green home improvements continue to boom thanks to COVID-19.
With many of us still working from home, now is a great time to make some affordable green home improvements that can increase energy savings and help make a difference for the planet. Plus, improvements can add to your home’s value.
Here are five green home improvements to boost your home’s energy efficiency.
1. Choose Energy Star-certified products
Have older or outdated appliances that aren’t performing well? For an efficiency upgrade, look for the blue Energy Star label on products from appliances and electronics to lighting and HVAC systems. You can even find Energy Star windows, which not only will lower your overall energy costs but will improve the comfort of your home. For added value, look for appliances with the Energy Star “Most Efficient” designation. These green home improvement products deliver cutting-edge energy efficiency along with technological innovations.
2. Update your HVAC
The end of summer is a great opportunity to get your home ready for cooler temperatures. Heating and cooling cost the average homeowner about $875 per year, according to the EPA’s Energy Star website. If your HVAC system is more than 10 years old, or you are paying for frequent repairs and your bills are going up, it may be time to upgrade.
3. Go solar
Now may be the perfect time to switch to renewable energy. Solar energy helps power your home, saving hundreds of dollars in utility bills while also boosting your home’s value and helping the environment.
Considering installing solar panels, but don’t know where to start? Now you can figure out what your home needs through a digital “solar concierge,” which can help you explore technology and financing decisions tailored to your situation. The solar concierge program from LG helps you determine whether going solar will meet your objectives and, if it does, how to get your installation fulfilled by a local installer. And remember that not all solar panels are created equal; it’s best to go with high-efficiency panels from a brand you know and trust.
4. Reduce air leaks and check insulation
Sealing air leaks and adding insulation can help increase comfort and energy efficiency. And, it may provide up to a 10% savings on your annual energy bills, according to the EPA. Pay special attention to preventing air leaks (with simple foam insulation) when installing your window air conditioner for the summer.
Simple fixes include installing weather-stripping on doors and caulking around windows, while bigger jobs include sealing leaks and adding insulation in your attic. Replacing aging windows and doors that are not energy efficient and may have cracks or leaks will improve your home’s energy efficiency. Another upside? Brand new doors and windows can instantly increase your home’s curb appeal.
5. Upgrade your bathroom plumbing fixtures
Opting for newer toilets, sinks and showerheads will help save on your water bill. Today’s bathroom fixtures use less water, which is more eco-friendly.
Not sure what to tackle first? Many energy or utility companies offer homeowners a free energy audit. An expert comes to your home to determine the worst culprits in reducing your energy efficiency and air leakage around your house. This can help you target your improvements to achieve the best results in the quickest, most cost-effective way. Your home will feel more comfortable, and you’ll know you’re doing what you can to help the environment.