Start Storing Savings Alongside your Stuff
We only think about the attic when it’s time to deal with holiday decorations or search for a long-lost bauble, but this part of your home is rife with ways to save energy and help lower your electricity bill.
According to a May 2012 study from the U.S. Department of Energy, approximately 80% of homes built prior to 1980 are under-insulated. That means many of have lots of room for improvement with our home insulation.
- Adding insulation to your attic is one of the most cost-effective ways to make your home more comfortable year-round. The Department of Energy estimates that properly insulating your house can save you around 20% on your home heating and cooling bills.
- It’s important to make sure your attic insulation is a good fit for the climate where you live. The S. Department of Energy recommends insulation with a rating between R-38 and R-49 for South Texas and R-49 for North and West Texas.
- Install a radiant barrier. A properly installed radiant heat barrier in your attic can greatly reduce the effects of the sun’s radiant heat in the hot Texas summers.
- Radiant barriers help lower the temperature on the top surface of your insulation by either reflecting heat back up towards your roof or by reducing the amount of heat coming through your roof, depending on the installation method used.
Proper attic ventilation is another great energy-saving strategy.
- Think of all the heat that collects under your roof in a typical Texas summer. Allowing the attic to breathe removes heat and helps your air conditioner work more effectively.
- Installing ridge and soffit vents are excellent ways to remove heat.
- Investigate a continuous ventilation systems, which are installed behind gutters or under roof shingles to help hot air escape from the attic.
Be sure to have your ducts checked to make sure they’re working properly and are free of punctures, cracks, leaks and gaps.
- Ensure the air ducts in your attic and/or crawlspaces have proper insulation.
- If cool, air conditioned air runs through a hot attic via un-insulated ducts, you can lose as much as 60% of your cooled air before it ever reaches the vent.
- This is also true for heated air running through a cold attic in the wintertime.
- Any of these problems can result in your nice, cool air escaping into the attic instead of your house.
Don’t get steamy in the attic! Start lowering your usage with these energy savings suggestions.