Thursday, August 5, 2010

Is your house too hot?

I have had many calls over the last couple weeks with the heat affecting just about everyone.  I'm not sure when this heat wave will end but I can promise you that the heat will always be back in the Okanagan.  So many people are asking for solutions to keep cool and keep their cooling costs down. 

Here is a few helpful hints on what you can do to combat the heat:
  • Make sure your ceiling insulation is at least up to code R-44 or have at least 12-16 inches of insulation.  Some home owners that are really suffering in the summer may want also consider a radiant barrier for their attic.  They are really helpful especially in the hot summers as they can improve your insulation performance by 20% and also reflect 97% of all radiant heat gain which can result in a 40% reduction in cooling costs
  • Invest in dark or multi layered blinds for your windows.
  • All though it is expensive to replace windows they can usually pay them selves off in 5-7 years if your windows are poor.  With Low E, multi layered glass and Argon technology the R-value in a new window can easily be R-4 or even R-7 where old windows can give you an R-value of only 1 at best.
  • Make sure your attic is properly ventilated.  For every 1200 sqft of attic space you should have at least 4 attic vents and baffles coming through to your soffits for cross ventilation.  Ventilation is key to keeping cool as insulation is designed to hold heat and if it is not ventilated it will keep your house warm all through the evening.  Also mold can be a concern when areas are not properly ventilated, this is bad for the home and your health.  Seasonal attic fans are also a good idea.
  • If you ever replace your roof consider lighter colors as black and other dark colours are very warm.
  • Old air conditioners can be very poor performers and cause you allot of money.  Its worth checking the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating) on your unit as to my knowledge AC units go as high as 12 or 13 SEER but heat pumps can go over 19 SEER which results in big savings for cooling and heating.
  • Is your house south facing and exposed to the sun?  Planting or transplanting a large tree can add landscaping value and shade for your home.
For all your insulation needs contact TLC Energy Solutions

Terry Laurin
“Helping you become Energy Efficient”

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