May 292011
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So mid December last year, Carlos and I were debating on whether to get new windows or get the fireplace insert we’ve been wanting for our fireplace.

New windows would add a good resale value to the house, if we were to put it on the market (though there are no plans of doing this anytime soon) and they would give us efficiency throughout, not to mention the low-e glass will help keep the house warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.  With our current double-pane windows, we feel a breeze around almost all of them but especially in our master bedroom and TV/living room.  In our master bath, the top of the window does not stay put!  And in our TV/living room, one of the glass rectangles was broken by our 65 lb American Bulldog Alli – guess she didn’t realize that even if the glass was not there, she could not fit through the rectangle, LOL!  Even though fixing the broken glass would’ve been inexpensive, we haven’t got around to fixing it.  But even if we had fixed it, there’s that breeze I mentioned around the frame.  A plus to getting new windows is that we’d get the tax credit along with a rebate that our Energy company had going on, making our total expense much less.  Yay for savings!

We have a wood fireplace and we love to have a fire in cooler weather.  Even though a fire is lovely, our fireplace is inefficient because it makes the rest of the house cold – making the furnace work harder to keep the house warm.  A fireplace insert would allows us to have a nice fire – especially if we get one with glass doors (which is what I want) – while at the same time, keeping the rest of the house warm by allowing us to not have to use the furnace which in turn would save us even more money.  We would have a highly efficient fireplace and save money.  It’s great plus its green!  Only ‘issue’ might be getting wood but, Carlos frequents craigslist and there are always people getting rid of wood…for free!  So we could potentially save a lot of money on getting the insert.

Have you made your house more efficient lately?  I’d love to hear about it.

~ Lili

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