This article is modified from a blog originally published on Saturn Resource Management on August 20th, 2012 by John Krigger
There are many changes you can make to your mobile home more energy efficient, cutting the cost of fuel and electricity bills.
Some changes are easy and inexpensive, some may take a little work, but the cost savings are well worth it!
Starting from the top down, here’s how to make your manufactured or mobile home more energy-efficient.
Mobile Home Roof & Ceiling
1. Save energy by changing your mobile home roof covering
Did you know that a cool roof coating can lower mobile home temperature, reflect up to 85% of the sunlight, reduce smog and save your electric bill by cutting down unnecessary air conditioning costs?
Cool roof coatings are thick, white colored pigments that continuously reflect both solar infrared and ultraviolet rays away from your home, making it significantly more energy efficient in the summer months. A standard shingled roof might easily exceed 100 degrees on even a sunny 70 degree day — a cool roof coating will help keep the surface temp aligned with that.
2. Add mobile home roof insulation
It takes a little more work, but you can save up to 15% of heating and insulation costs simply by insulating your mobile home or manufactured home roof cavity. Installing a sloped roof allows extra room for insulation in the ceiling of your home.
Energy Efficiency Inside Your Mobile Home
The interior of your mobile home or manufactured housing can be a cause of much wasted energy. From doors, windows , walls and lighting, to the kitchen, bathroom, furnace and appliances – there are a lot of ways to make your mobile home more energy efficient from within.
3. Save energy in the kitchen
Did you know that you can speed up cooking and save energy by using lids on pots and pans? Pressure cookers can reduce cooking time even further.
Other ways to reduce energy in the kitchen include
- Defrosting in the fridge in advance instead of using a microwave
- Not using your full oven for small meals
- Choosing Energy Star® appliances
- Not overfilling your refrigerator.
4. Replace light bulbs with energy efficient lighting
With most homes commiting 10%-12% of the entire energy output to lighting, making upgrades here is one of the more obvious starting points when considering how to make your mobile home more energy efficient .
Simple ways to improve the energy efficiency of your lighting include:
- Changing light bulbs to compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) – CFLs use up to a quarter of the energy of a regular light bulb.
- Switching lighting off when it is not needed.
- Cleaning lighting fixtures to maximize lighting output.
5. Service your mobile home furnace
Unlike site built homes, mobile home furnaces draw air directly into the furnace through removable grilles. Cleaning or replacing the furnace filter inside can drastically reduce energy costs and make the furnace more efficient.
It is also a good idea to inspect the squirrel cage blower at the top of your mobile home furnace for any dust or grease.
6. Make your mobile home windows more energy efficient
Simple plastic window coverings can help reduce energy costs and cut out drafts. The disposable plastic covering can be removed for the summer.
Storm windows – extra glass panes fitted to the interior of mobile home windows can also be installed for permanent energy saving. Internal storm windows are also more protected from the elements. Make sure the frame is tightly sealed. Additional insulation can be achieved with foam tape.
7. Mobile home cooling (inside & out!)
Air conditioners not only cool the air, they take out moisture to make the air more comfortable. You can lower A/C running costs by lowering the moisture in your mobile home so that your A/C unit can run more efficiently. Moisture comes from two main sources: the ground, and air leakage from air conditioning units.
Another way to reduce air conditioning costs is to prevent the heat before it gets to your home using a cool roof solution (see point 1), and employing effective use of shade trees, trellises, and window films.
Mobile Home Flooring and Crawl Space Savings
8. Add Insulation under the Floor
Mobile homes often already have insulation, but they tend to be only partially filled which means there is always room for more!
It is a good idea to hire an insulation professional and ask for blown fiberglass to reduce the potential corrosion of any metal parts from cellulose insulation.
9. Check your Crawlspace & Ducts
The crawl space underneath your manufactured home is often neglected, but there are energy savings to be had beneath the floor. Adding skirting around the mobile home can prevent excess heat from escaping but make sure you can still access the crawl space.
Check the area underneath the furnace for loose ducts or joints and use metal Duct Tape if possible as traditional gray fabric tape can come loose.
10. Check for water leakage and seepage
Leaks in your mobile home’s roofs and walls allow for water to seep in and cause mold, mildew, and rot. By sealing your roof, installing gutters, and taking steps to seal around leaky seams and around water and drain pipes, you can make your home last longer and save lots of money on costly repairs.
Shop Star Mobile Home Supply’s complete product inventory for all your repair and replacement needs.