Tag Archives: energy efficient


Don’t forget about these winter window maintenance tasks

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Don’t forget about these winter window maintenance tasks

As home heating costs continue to rise, saving money and conserving the home’s warm air has become a top priority for many Canadian homeowners. That’s why it’s essential to take time to maintain your windows this winter, since drafty windows can account for up to 40% of a home’s heat loss. Here are a few tips on how to keep the heat in.

Check for Leaks

The best way to prevent heat from sneaking out the window is by checking the windows in your home for any leaks. An easy way to do this is with a smoldering incense stick. Light the incense and hold it close to each window. If the smoke is being pushed away from the window, there’s a good chance that you might have a leak.

You also want to check the caulking along the frame since it can dry out and gap.

Insulate your Windows

Winter insulation is a good idea for homes in most cold weather climates. It keeps home interiors comfortable and home heating bills low. Two easy ways to keep the warm air inside are with window insulation film and thermal curtains.

Window Insulation Film

Window insulation film is often available as part of a kit, which contains double-sided tape and a large sheet of insulating film. The tape it affixed to the window frame and then the film is applied to it. Next, a hair dryer is used to tighten the film by shrinking it into place.

Thermal Curtains

Thermal window curtains are an easy, affordable way to provide extra insulation. Sometimes called cold-blocking curtains, these energy-conserving window coverings are either double or triple layered and may also be coated on one side with an acrylic foam. Some options are available layered and backed by a thick, insulating layer.

Replace the Windows

Sometimes the best solution for a drafty home is to replace your windows. Leaky windows can not only elevate your home heating bill but can lead to additional problems like allergens getting into the home, and condensation, which can lead to mold, mildew and damage to surrounding wood.

Newer, more energy-efficient double and triple glazed models can be filled with inert gas which provides further insulation. They will help you enjoy a more comfortable home and lower your energy bills as well.

*Article courtesy of EiEiHome


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The View From Inside: Extreme Weather Conditions

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The View From Inside: Extreme Weather Conditions

The Advantages of buying a newly constructed home.

By Louie Morizio, Geranium

The frigid temperatures we experienced in late December through early January bring sharply into focus the many advantages of owning a newly built home – among them a comfortable indoor environment in a house designed to withstand extreme weather conditions.

The Ontario Building Code (OBC) lays out stringent criteria that builders in the province have to meet. Included are minimum requirements for items such as insulation, airtightness, HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems and many other elements that also contribute to sustaining the life of the home itself.

With advances in materials, technology and construction techniques, it’s important to the homeowners that builders offer the finest and most energy efficient new homes. To ensure this practice, OBC, which is administered by the Building and Development Branch of the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, is reviewed and updated every five to seven years. Occasionally, amendments are made between reviews to accommodate specific advancements in building and energy requirements.

Today’s walls, ceilings, windows and doors are designed to minimize the effects of the outside climate on the interior temperature of the home while also providing more energy efficiency than ever before. Increases to the minimum R-value for insulation by the OBC (the higher the R-value, the greater the insulating effectiveness) ultimately lowers the cost to heat and cool a home, and results in a more comfortable indoor environment. In a Geranium-built home, we also use upgraded foam insulation that is sprayed in place to fill gaps around exterior pipes and hard to heat areas where cold can penetrate.

You may have seen homes under construction, or under renovation, where a weather-resistive barrier or home wrap has been installed. This product is a breathable membrane that acts as a superior air barrier to protect against drafts and condensation.

New homes require experts to design the HVAC systems, and the calculations are done precisely for the size and building components of each home. Today’s furnaces are highly effective and the OBC ensures a minimum efficiency.

If you are among the many who will be shopping for a home this year, there’s a strong case to be made for buying new, of which this article only addresses one aspect. It is also wise to ask about the builder’s construction approach and whether they build to minimum OBC standards, or aim higher, as Geranium does.

Compared to the homes of decades ago, new homes offer more comfort and efficiency, especially important during our Ontario winters. Focusing on the behind-the-wall building practices ensures built-in value, in essence future proofing homes and protecting our homebuyers’ investments. To learn more about construction techniques, visit Geranium.com and view our Construction & Craftsmanship video.

Louie Morizio, is vice president, housing for Geranium and a Director of RESCON. Since 1977, Geranium has built more than 8,000 homes in fine neighbourhoods and communities throughout Ontario.



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Product Profile: Enbridge

Product Profile: Enbridge Gas

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Product Profile: Enbridge Gas

Savings by Design program improves energy performance and saves on costs

Enbridge Gas Distribution is committed to helping its customers and the environment through delivering and incenting energy education and efficiency programs. Its Savings by Design (SBD) program improves the energy performance of new homes and buildings in Ontario, which in turn helps homeowners and businesses save on their energy costs.

The SBD program is a green building initiative through which Enbridge offers support and financial incentives from early design all the way through construction to assist builders with the vision of constructing energy-efficient, healthy and sustainable homes and buildings that exceed municipal and provincial building code requirements. SBD is delivered with one goal in mind: to help builders and developers achieve higher levels of energy and environmental performance.

The SBD program has assisted in saving over two tonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per home with over 7,000 residences having been built to the SBD standard and over 90 commercial buildings in various stages of program participation.

Taking into account the size of the average commercial building, it is expected there will be savings in excess of 27,500 tonnes of GHG emissions as a result of the SBD program by December of 2017.

The SBD program demonstrates wide-reaching impacts with more than 200 residential and commercial builders, their supply chain partners, their customers and their communities having benefitted from the Savings by Design program. The program creates awareness and building inventory that ensures the next generation of buildings in Ontario have the energy and environmental performance commensurate with the province’s goal of leading in the fight against climate change.

Enbridge recognizes that natural resources and green spaces are precious, and we take great responsibility in protecting the environment. To date, its energy-efficiency programs have saved 10.3 billion cubic metres of natural gas, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 19.4 million tonnes. That’s enough energy to heat 4.3 million homes for an entire year.

Savings by Design

Go online to learn more about the SBD program.



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