Licensed contractor Skip Bedell shares some of his best tips for improving energy efficiency at home.

There are a few constants of summer – grill use is going to go into overdrive, tomatoes are going to taste better, and your air conditioning is going to run more than you want it to. Fortunately the last one doesn’t have to be a given. Licensed contractor and home building expert Skip Bedell shares his tips for improving efficiency and reducing energy costs at home.

His recommendation? Combine old-school better building with smart home innovations.


Skip’s Tips:

1) Fill up the whole wall cavity with insulation.

Lack of wall insulation is one of the leading causes of energy escape in the home; however accessing the wall to remedy the situation isn’t always easy. One of the best times to tackle this problem is during a renovation project. This is also a good time to check and make sure the insulation is installed properly. It should fill the entire cavity smoothly, without gaps or bunching.

For added protection especially in areas of mixed-climate use a vapor retarder, like Membrain, to seal the wall completely.

Should you insulate when you renovate?

Do you need a vapor barrier? Three simple questions should give you your answer.

2) Invest in a thermostat with geo-location capabilities.

These smart thermostats automatically adjust with your movements. When you leave the thermostat adjusts up then automatically returns to a comfortable temperature before you return home.

3) Mini splits are a good ductless cooling option.

If your home wasn’t built with central air conditioning in mind, it can be messy and expensive to run ductwork throughout your home. Ductless splits are an efficient alternative using roughly 30% less energy than electric baseboard or forced air units.

4) Install more ceiling fans.

Run a ceiling fan with your air conditioner and you can turn your air conditioner up by four degrees.

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