Put a Sweater on your home | Energy Efficient Windows
Our latest segment with CTV Vancouver explores the idea of “putting a sweater on your home”. The idea being that you should focus on upgrading the envelope of your home before you upgrade the heating system. Winter is coming so watch to learn all the tips and tricks on maintaining an optimal temperature for your home!
If you happen to be working from home, you may find it hard to maintain that temperature once the furnace shuts down. What can a home owner do to improve the efficiency of its heating system?
A common misunderstanding that many people have is it’s about the efficiency of their furnace. Maybe it’s not big enough to heat the home well. However, when your home cools off too fast once the furnace turns off, it’s an indication that your homes’ outer walls are not insulated well enough. We call this part of the home the “envelope”, it’s the skin of the home. The Attic, the crawlspace, the walls, and the windows.
So what are the first steps a home owner can do to determine if they need to upgrade the envelope of their home?
The easiest first step is to check your attic. If you have about 4 inches or less of insulation, it is not insulated well enough. If you have a crawlspace, check this as well. It was common in the 70’s to not put any insulation in the crawlspace. These can be some very low cost and easy access areas to upgrade.
You can also look at the walls and windows. It can be difficult to determine if you have insulation in your walls as they are hidden from view and also be every costly to upgrade. We tend to focus on the areas that we can impact the most. It’s rather simple to replace inefficient windows with new energy efficient windows.
I’ve seen ads on TV for rebates that are available through the utilities for upgrading heating systems, are these available for items like insulation and windows too?
Yes they are. There are many rebates right now for doing upgrades to your home to make it more energy efficient. These don’t just apply to heating systems, but also apply to the envelope of the home. I like to call this “putting a sweater on your home”. The idea being that you should focus on upgrading the envelope of your home before you upgrade the heating system.
What is great right now is there is a rebate available from FortisBC and BC Hydro that will offset some of the costs to do your insulation and windows upgrade. This rebate however does require you to install better then code minimum windows, similar to how there is a rebate for an electric car not just a new car.
What is even better right now is to help stimulate the economy during COVID- 19, there is a short term rebate, where certain windows can qualify for double the rebate. There is a limited time offer on this so it’s important that you act now.
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