As the temperatures rise, you'll surely be looking for ways to stay cool this summer and a lot of the time it will probably be in your own home. But running the A/C will also mean running up that energy bill! You may not be able to do much about the cost of electricity, but you can make a few minor adjustments to try and keep your bill as low as possible.
These simple and inexpensive tips are a great way to prepare your home for the hot weather...
- Door Sweep-- Blocks hot air from entering the home via the space between the door and the threshold. Sweeps can range $2.50 for a self-adhesive plastic model to $10 for a more permanent, heavy-duty rubber version. About 11% of air leaks happen at the door. Sealing it well improves heating efficiency.
- Weather Stripping-- Covers gaps between windows or doors (and their frames) without impeding opening or closing. A self-adhesive roll of 17 feet costs about $3. You'll probably need one roll per door or window. Weather stripping can cut your energy use by up to 10%.
- Caulk-- Seals small cracks and crevices (less than 1/4-inch wide) between window or door frame and the moulding. Caulk cartridges cost about $4 to $10. One cartridge typically covers two windows or doors. Apply using a caulk gun, which is about $4. Like weather stripping, sealing cracks can save 10% or more on your cooling bills.
- Insulated Shade-- Prevents the cool air from escaping through glass--especially if you have older, single pane windows. Prices range depending on material, style, and size of your window. A quality one can cost around $200. Two-thirds more cool air can be retained by covering your windows with these shades.
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