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Energy-Saving Tips: How to Stop Heat Leaking from Your Home

Energy-Saving Tips: How to Stop Heat Leaking from Your Home By Karin Mangan
HIPhome Columnist
December 31, 1969

With energy prices still high, don't waste money by allowing heat to escape from your home. Instead, why not invest your hard-earned cash in measures to insulate your home. A little expenditure in the short-term could add up to significant savings over time.

Where to focus your energy-saving measures

  • Windows and doors are the obvious places that allow heat to escape. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 21% of heat loss is through windows and doors, so think about getting replacement windows or doors that are more energy efficient. Alternatively, use caulking to stop air leaks around the edges of frames, attach a brush strip at the bottom of the door to stop drafts, and hang heavier drapes to act as insulation.
  • Heat rises, so proper insulation of the roof is important. Floors, walls, and ceilings account for about 31% of heat loss so installing insulation in the walls, floors, basement, and crawl space can save a great deal of energy.
  • Many homeowners are unaware of the amount of heat lost through electrical sockets, fan vents, and plumbing pipes. The U.S. Department of Energy reports that plumbing penetrations account for 13% of heat loss, electrical outlets account for 2%, and fans and vents 4%. Cover pipes and fan vents when not in use and use caulking or a foam insulating gasket to seal around electrical sockets.
  • Fireplaces allow a significant amount of heat to escape--14% of a home's heat loss--so block up the flue when you're not using the fireplace.

You should also service your HVAC system regularly so that it is working efficiently. Not only can these measures save you money, they can also contribute toward saving the environment so, in the long-term, you win twice over.

Sources
Energy Savers: Tips on Saving Energy & Money at Home • http://www1.eere.energy.gov/http://www1.eere.energy.gov/consumer/tips/pdfs/energy_savers.pdf • U.S. Department of Energy,
Josh Peterson • The Great (Heat) Escape • Jun 05, 2008 • http://planetgreen.discovery.com/http://planetgreen.discovery.com/home-garden/great-heat-escape.html • Planet Green,
Sarah Max • Save Your Energy • Jan 01, 2006 • http://money.cnn.com/http://money.cnn.com/magazines/moneymag/moneymag_archive/2006/01/01/8365192/index.htm • CNN Money


About the Author

Karin has worked as a freelancer for over ten years, writing informatively about a wide range of subjects. She has a PhD and a background in education and research.




*Before you apply any of the advice described on the Hip-home.com website, you should consider if the advice is safe and suitable for your individual home situation and consult experts as necessary to evaluate the suitability for your circumstances.
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