New Year, New Home: Energy Savings Projects to Tackle in 2017

By Sulema Vela, Southern Division Pro Director, The Home Depot

Depending on your local climate and home structure, energy use can be an escalating concern for home owners. In, just under half (42 percent) of home energy costs stem from heating and cooling, with energy use (and related costs) expected to increase by another 2.4 percent this winter alone.

The New Year is the perfect time for homeowners to make energy-efficient upgrades to their homes. In turn, this also marks the perfect opportunity to work together with your clients on new temperature-resilient and cost-effective implementations.

Seal the Deal 

Sealing a home from drafts can save more than 20 percent on heating and cooling bills. As a result, any energy-improvement plan should examine overlooked areas of the home for gaps, cracks and holes.

pro_installer_caulking_bFor instance, Great Stuff Gaps and Cracks Insulating Foam Sealant will provide additional protection in drafty areas around windows and doorways.

Weatherstripping is a basic preventative measure your clients can address themselves. Easy-to-install products, such as weatherstrip tape, will stop air leaks and keep drafts out. Similarly, slide-on door bottoms are great for blocking drafts from entering the home through door frame gaps.

 

Stay Warm through Insulation

atticat-blown-in-insulation-system

Increasing insulation in the attic, and around the water heater and pipes, can boost a homeowner’s energy savings and maintain more consistent and comfortable temperatures. Since your clients may not fully know the type or volume of insulation that is best for them, take a few minutes to review their attic insulation needs and estimate the quantity needed to make an impact.

Water heaters account for 18 percent of a home’s energy use, insulating the water heater with a blanket can increase stored water temperatures and reduce water heating costs by as much as 9 percent. If your clients are ready for a new water heater, tankless options like Rheem can slash energy consumption by nearly one-third. This is an excellent option for limited-space properties.

Wrapping pipes is also an easy option to saving energy costs, pipe insulation will prepare the home for colder days and nights, and prevent moisture build up during the rest of the year.

Make Energy Conservation Smarter

New technology and smart products make it easy to improve at-home energy efficiency. A simple upgrade to a Wi-Fi programmable thermostat, such as the Honeywell Lyric Round Thermostat, will allow homeowners to moderate electricity and gas usage and program temperatures from just about anywhere through a smartphone app. The Lyric thermostat also will measure humidity levels to ensure more accurate temperatures.

Some smart thermostats can self-program to adjust temperatures based on clients’ schedules, preventing the heating or cooling of unoccupied rooms. The ecobee 3 WiFi Programmable Thermostat, for instance, can connect to remote sensors around the house to ensure consistent temperatures in all rooms.

rheem-indoor-tankless-gas-water-heater ecobee-thermostat

Make the motto “New Year, New Home” for your clients, and help them keep money in their pockets by becoming more energy efficient in 2017. For more information visit www.homedepot.com/energy


About the Author

Sulema Vela, Southern Division Pro Director, The Home Depot

Sulema is responsible for the Pro business in The Home Depot’s Southern Division, leading a team of more than 80 Pro Account Representatives in an area that encompasses 700 stores across 13 states. She has over 18 years of experience at The Home Depot, starting in 1999 as a part-time cashier while she earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration. During her time at Home Depot, Sulema has served in a variety of roles and capacities – including Department Supervisor, Assistant Store Manager, Store Manager and District Manager.

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