#ActAndSave: Fires

#ActAndSave: Fires

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As fires rage across [enter region] you don’t have to suffer with the smoke and odor permeating your house. There are some easy improvements you can make in your own home to not only keep out the smoke but also make it more comfortable and energy efficient.

Recommendation

Start by improving your home’s insulation and sealing any drafts. According to experts this is one of the best ways to keep smoke and odors from seeping in while also lowering your energy bills. For extra protection add in a filtered ventilation system, to follow the foolproof mantra of “build tight and ventilate right.” Take on the biggest culprits in the home first:

  • Draft proof your home by sealing gaps around windows and doors and other building penetrations like baseboards, outlets, and holes for plumbing with caulk, spray-foam or weather stripping to keep the smoke out.
  • Add insulation to your attic and/or walls to keep out outside allergens and stay cool while also saving up to 30% on summer air conditioning costs.
  • Install a filtered ventilation system or an energy recovery ventilation system equipped with a filter to mechanically ventilate your home so that the indoor air quality stays healthy.
Take Action
  1. Get informed: Whether you are a DIY kind of family, or looking to hire a local contractor to do the work, starting with the right information is essential:
    1. Learn where the gaps are: Visually inspect your house to detect leaks by following the recommendations from the US Department of Energy.
    2. Hire a qualified technician to conduct a home energy audit, particularly a blower door test.
    3. There are helpful tips and resources at Energy Star’s online “Home Energy Knowledge Center,” where you can match your biggest concerns with the best home energy improvement project. Or, check out the best recommendations by zip code provided by the US Department of Energy
    4. See what financing options you may quality for, with the Database of State Incentives, your local electric utility, or options from traditional lending institutions.
  2. Act: Ready to take on your home improvement? Here are a few things to consider:
    1. Hiring help? Find a qualified contractor in your area with like BPI-certified contractors
    2. Going the DIY route? The DOE’s DIY energy saver guide includes project tips, material guides, and more.
  3. Share: Snap a picture and tell us what you’re doing to improve your home’s performance this summer—tagging us at [fill in network’s social media username]. We may feature your project in an upcoming news segment.

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Quick Facts

Source: US Department of Energy

  • Sealing uncontrolled air leaks can save you 10-20% on annual cooling bills while keeping the smoke out of your house.
  • Weatherstripping double-hung windows can keep out the smoke and save 5-10% annually on cooling bills, an average savings of $42-$83.
  • Over 70% of fine particulate matter from wildfire smoke can penetrate indoors in a drafty home. (Source: EPA)
Social Media Posts

Establish a hashtag for your network in order to share these and similar tips with viewers and followers:

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