Top 15 Green Home Improvements: Costs in 2021 – Home Energy Efficiency

All major home remodeling efforts demand careful consideration and planning. When tackling an energy efficient home upgrade, that task can truly expand exponentially. It is imperative that you utilize a whole-house system approach to the project to wring the most value from your efforts.

Did you know? Home Energy savings realized in one segment of your property can easily be gobbled up by neglecting to pay attention to other energy-sapping culprits — With that in mind let’s look at some of the popular energy-saving home improvement projects and take a stab at evaluating their value…

1. Smart Home Energy Audit

energy-audit-thermal-image via Henges Insulation

Your first step is to engage a professional energy audit of your house ($300-$500 by a trained energy expert although you may be able to wrangle one for less – or even free – from your local utility eager to reduce its power burden). This will factor into your home remodel plans such vital actors as site conditions, your local climate, your home’s micro-climate, the state of your current heating and cooling environment versus your required needs and so on.

Hey, this is already 2021, so much of this work can be accomplished by a computer simulation! When complete, you will not only have specific goals for the reduced utility and home maintenance costs, but also ideas for a healthier and safer interior living environment that will increase the physical comfort, energy efficiency, and dampen noise levels. A professional home energy audit should also include any local state incentives and tax breaks you are in line to receive for embarking on energy-saving projects.

A typical home energy audit will uncover opportunities to improve energy efficiency and comfort of your home by sealing the air leaks and drafts and upgrading the level of insulation in critical areas such as crawl spaces, wall cavities, and attic where there might be thermal energy loss due to inadequate insulation.

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How to Prevent Ice Dams on the Roof

Winter season brings us heavy snowstorms, low temperatures, and ice dams. Are you one of the many homeowners who must worry about the unsightly ice dams and icicles hanging down from the eaves of the roof and causing damage to the roof, gutters, and your home this winter?

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Why Ice Dams are Dangerous

The major issue with ice dams on the roof, is that they trap the melting water running down from the top of the roof, and thereby cause it (the melted water) to rise up underneath the roofing shingles, and eventually seep through the boards and walls inside our homes.

ice-dam-formation

What causes Ice Dams?

The heat from inside the house rises up into the attic space where it continues to rise reaching the apex of the roof. The warm air warms up the top of the roof, which causes the snow accumulated on top of the roof to melt. The melted snow turns into water that starts running down the roof surface underneath the snowpack. When the water reaches the colder edges at the bottom of the roof, it refreezes forming a wall of ice. This wall of ice is commonly referred to as an ice dam, because it traps the melting water like a dam.

Common Misconceptions:

Although, ice dams can sometimes reach the gutters, they do not form in the gutters, but rather they form at the eaves of the roof. If you can get your attic-space air temperature to stay at 30° F, or lower (during heavy snow fall accompanied by low temperatures), then you should be able to eliminate ice dams from happening in the first place.

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How to Install a Metal Shingles Roof – DIY Guide

If you are the type of homeowner who wants to embark on the installation of a new roof, a metal shingles roofing system will be the easiest to install.

metal-shingles-roof-installation

Most metal shingle systems feature a four-way interlocking design, and the panels are usually small enough to be easily installed without using any complicated tools.

Roof Deck Preparation

Deck Prep:

The first step is the preparation of the roof deck. In a new construction, metal shingle roofing can be installed over any type of solid sheeting such as plywood or wooden planks / boards that do not have spaces in between them.

Alternatively, a metal shingles roof can be installed over the old asphalt shingles, if you do not want to tear it off, provided there is only one layer of existing shingles on the roof.

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