The record temperatures this summer come with their own set of challenges for your home, from higher utility costs to extra stress on your HVAC system. However, a few simple improvements can help you avoid significant home repairs and costly utility bills, while increasing the value of your home.
Temperature Check: Installing a programmable thermostat can help you save on heating and cooling costs. This device allows you to customize your indoor temperature throughout the day, which could lead to utility bill savings. Many smart thermostats also alert you to ways you could save more and if there are any issues with your HVAC system.
HVAC Tune-up: Check the condition of your air conditioner and replace your filter regularly. Dirty filters are one of the leading causes of HVAC system failures. When the summer heat is especially intense, keep in mind that most systems are only able to cool homes approximately 20 degrees below the outside temperatures. However, if your system doesn’t seem to be keeping up, you can check with a professional to make sure it's working properly. Additionally, installing ceiling fans if you don’t already have them and adding curtains or shades to windows will keep your home cool and decrease the stress on your HVAC system.
Replace Windows: If you own an older home with original windows, new windows can increase your energy efficiency significantly and provide a return on investment. If old windows are replaced now, the new ones will help prevent heat loss during the winter months as well and provide more indoor comfort. Kim Anderson, owner of Window World of Chattanooga, shares, “When deciding to replace windows in an older home, homeowners need to look for energy-efficient products to improve the value of their home. Window World offers energy efficient windows, siding, doors, and roofs. Not only will the products help with a homeowner’s energy bills but can enhance the appearance of an older home.”
Inspect and Clean Your Dryer Vents: Dryer vents get clogged with lint, which can keep your dryer from functioning well. If your vents are not clean, not only will it take longer for your clothes to dry, but your utility bill may also increase along with the risk of a house fire. A professional can inspect and clean your vent and ensure your exhaust system is working properly.
For a list of qualified professionals to help with your summer home improvements, visit the Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga member directory at www.HBAGC.net.