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Category Archives: Energy Efficiency

A roof and chimney

Is Your Home Weatherproofed?

By | DIY, Energy Efficiency, Home Inspection, Professional Tips, Seasonal, Winter | No Comments

They say that you take on another full-time job when you become a homeowner. Anyone that has had to do a bit of routine maintenance around the home understands this to be true.

Thankfully, some projects are easier to pull off than others. As long as you make sure that your home is as best protected from inclement weather as humanly possible, you shouldn’t have too many major projects to have to tackle later down the line.

Keeping rain, snow, and ice out of your home is going to be an ongoing battle between you and Mother Nature, but it’s one that you absolutely have to win all the time – 100% of the time – or you’re going to be looking at some seriously sticky situations.

Make sure that your roof is in tip-top shape

Verifying that your home is as weatherproofed as it gets starts with making sure that your roof is in the best possible shape it can be in.

After all, your roof is going to be the very first line of defense between you and inclement weather. It’s going to do the bulk of the heavy lifting to make sure that you stay high and dry every day of the year for at least a decade to come.

If climbing up a ladder and poking around on your roof is not your idea of a good time, Lucas Contracting is here to help. Our Ottawa roofers have the qualifications and experience to ensure your roof is in excellent shape. Preventative measures and small fixes over time will ensure you don’t have to do a complete roof overhaul ahead of schedule.

Check for any exterior damage

You also need to do a visual check of all exterior components of your home (especially your siding) to make sure that it is in tip-top shape as well.

Vinyl siding is very inexpensive and looks fantastic when installed properly, but it’s not exactly the stoutest stuff around. It chips easily when the temperature gets cold, and it gets more than a little bit “loosey-goosey” when the temperature starts to climb.

You need to be 100% certain that it’s going to continue to protect you from outside elements without allowing any weather to get into your home. Any signs of obvious damage or neglect need to be addressed ASAP.

Replace old windows and doors

Finally, you’ll want to think about swapping out all of your old windows and doors to replace them with more efficient and modern options.

This is especially true if your home is more than thirty years old and hasn’t seen any updates. The technology behind new windows and doors has come quite a way in just the last three decades. With an upgrade, you’ll be able to better protect your home from inclement weather, but you’ll also be able to dramatically reduce your energy bill while improving your overall safety to boot. This is definitely the kind of upgrade that your home deserves.

Call Lucas Contracting today for more recommendations on weatherproofing your home for whatever wild weather Ottawa has in store this year.

A row of houses with pristine rooves

3 Tips to Make Your Roof Last

By | Energy Efficiency, Renovations, Roof Inspection, Roofing | No Comments

It is of the utmost importance that you make sure your roof is in the best possible condition. If not, you run the risk of having to do a complete tear off and replacement. This kind of intensive project can cost you countless thousands that you could have spent elsewhere.

Thankfully, it isn’t all that difficult to maintain your roof (the roof you have right now) to help stretch its longevity a bit. This is especially true when you know exactly what you’re doing or hire a trusted Ottawa roofing company like Lucas Contracting. We are going to give you three different tips to make your roof last and last. These tips are going to save you a boatload of money (not to mention time, headache, and hassle) just by putting them into action.

Shall we jump right in?

Clean up your gutters every four months or so

One of the easiest things that you’ll be able to do dramatically extend the longevity of your roof is to simply clean out your gutters on a routine basis. Swabbing out your gutters every four months or so means that you’ll have to give up three weekends a year to really get the job done right. But you’ll be able to save thousands and thousands of dollars on costly roof repairs. It’s definitely worth it. If you’d rather spend your weekend lounging, an Ottawa roofing company like Lucas Contracting can handle the task with ease.

Remove debris from your shingles

No matter where your home is situated, the odds are pretty good that you’re going to have at least some debris collect upon your roof every year. Leaves, animal drops, dust, and random neighbourhood debris collects on your roof.

While a bit of debris isn’t going to be a nightmare situation, if you allow the debris to continue to collect things can really start to spiral out of control. Make sure that you’re power washing off the debris on your roof every year (hopefully right after spring), and your roof will last at least a couple of years longer than it would have otherwise.

Get rid of any growth

Finally, it’s important that you make sure there is no living organic material on your roof that could cause it to weaken structurally or as far as weatherproofing is concerned.

Moss growing on your roof might not seem like all that big of a deal at first, but if it continues to grow, it’s going to work to destroy your roof from the outside in, causing leaks and structural problems all over the place.

These three tips and the help of your Ottawa roofing company will ensure that your roof lasts for years – even decades – to come.

Energy efficient home

Make Your Home More Energy Efficient This Summer

By | Blog, Energy Efficiency | No Comments

There are many easy and effective steps that you can take to make your home more environmentally friendly. Making your home a green one is environmentally conscience and has the added benefit of saving you money over time on your gas and energy bills. You will be amazed at how much energy you can save by considering these steps:

 

Use Energy Star Appliances

 

Older appliances are less energy-efficient than newer Energy Star certified appliances. Using these appliances will go a long way towards saving energy and lowering your electricity and water bills. For example: a high-efficiency on-demand water heater only fires when you call for hot water. It heats up quickly – and then quits burning fuel. Low-flow toilets, shower heads, and washing machines can save a lot of water.

 

Switch to Fluorescent Light Bulbs

 

Switch your light bulbs from incandescent to fluorescent. Compact fluorescent bulbs cost more than incandescent bulbs initially. If you include the fact that fluorescent light bulbs last up to 12 times longer than their incandescent counterparts, you save you a lot of money going fluorescent. Your lighting budget will be reduced along with the amount of bulbs you throw out.

 

Add Extra Insulation

 

Adding new or additional insulation to your ceilings and walls will prevent air leaks, so you can keep the warm air inside in the winter and the cool air from escaping during the summer. Also consider adding extra caulking or weather stripping to your windows and doors for even more insulation.

 

Install Energy-Efficient Roofing

 

If you’ve ever stood on a roof on a hot summer day, you know how hot it can get. The heat absorbed by your roof makes your air conditioner work even harder to keep your home cool. You should consider installing a “cool roof” made of metal. A cool roof is designed to reflect more sunlight and absorb less heat than a standard roof. By installing a cool roof, you can lower the temperature of your roof by a large margin and save energy and money by using less air conditioning. Cool roofs make spaces like garages or covered patios more comfortable.

 

As cool roofs become more popular, communities will benefit from fewer power plant emissions and less demand for new power plants. Cool roofs can lower outside air temperatures, reducing heat islands in urban areas.

 

If installing energy-efficient roofing interests you, be sure to contact Lucas Contracting today for a free consultation.

Home in the summer

Making Your Home More Energy Efficient This Summer

By | Blog, Eco-Friendly Options, Energy Efficiency | No Comments

Now that the hot summer days are here, it’s tempting to crank up the A/C, peel off the layers, and retreat until fall. However, this won’t be so friendly on your wallet, so consider these tips to keep your home energy efficient even on the hottest days of the year:

  • Reduce your AC usage by turning up the thermostat when nobody is home during the day. You can also automate the thermostat to slowly increase the temperature so it’s just right when you get home.
  • Metal roofing is much more energy efficient than traditional asphalt shingles. Contact Lucas Contracting for fast and efficient installation this summer. Metal roofing will save you money and help the environment at the same time.
  • When AC filters get clogged with dust, they become less efficient. Replace filters about once per month so your AC runs at its best.
  • Ceiling fans can be used to circulate air and cool you down, just remember to turn them off when you leave the room.
  • You can plant small trees and high shrubs to keep your AC unit out of the direct sunlight. However, it is very important that you trim them so they don’t block airflow from the unit.
  • Appliances which produce heat, like dryers and dishwashers, should be used at night. Otherwise, they’ll just add hot air during the day. Do not use the oven on hot days.
  • All your entryway doors should have sweeps at the bottom. Sweeps will keep hot air out, and cool air in.
  • If you want to keep your house cool during the day, you should close shade and blinds. Direct sunlight will warm up the house.
  • Low AC intake vents should be closed, and the higher ones should be opened. This way, warm air will enter through the AC system.
  • When it’s really hot outside, you should switch the fan on your AC control system to “on” instead of “auto” so air is cycled
  • Make sure there are no drafts around windows, doors, and vents. If there are, seal them with weather stripping, caulk, or the appropriate materials.
  • Make the switch to energy efficient doors, windows, and light bulbs.
  • Make sure your roof does not have any loose or missing shingles. Also made sure gutters are free and clear. If there are holes and gaps, cold air can escape outward, costing you money. Contact Lucas Contracting for all your roofing needs.

Enjoy your summer!