If you have an older mobile home you can make various improvements to ensure its better energy efficiency. Your main aim should be to reduce heat loss, reduce heating fuel usage, and to use improved appliances and light bulbs for lower energy costs and reduced pollution.
One of the upsides of making your mobile home more energy-efficient is an increase in value and more comfort for you and your family. The improvements don’t need to cost a lot to make a big difference.
Admittedly, your best updates to make a mobile home more energy-efficient can have a substantial upfront cost like window or window pane replacement and installing insulation. However, they tend to improve the look of your home while reducing energy consumption so they can pay themselves off pretty fast.
However, there are some simple ways to reduce energy consumption that we cover below as well.
HVAC System Maintenance is a Smart Start to Make Your Mobile Home More Energy-Efficient
Before making any other attempts to make your mobile home energy-efficient, make sure that your HVAC system is in good condition and well maintained.
There are a variety of HVAC systems used in mobile homes. Due to space constraints, many air pumps are mostly located outside. These external parts need to be maintained with regular weeding and cleaning to prevent the accumulation of dirt. Mesh on ducts and registers should be replaced if they are torn and be sure nothing is blocking the areas where ventilation is needed.
Dirty HVAC filters reduce its effectiveness and increase energy costs so be sure to clean or replace them often.
A programmable thermostat is the best way to ensure that the AC units do not switch on and off all day. This prevents expensive temperature fluctuations and reduces the risk of malfunctions in the system.
Coolant levels in the HVAC should also be checked and leaks repaired.
Finally, the free flow of air is the most important part of your HVAC system. All air passageways into your home must be dust-free and free from obstructions.
Replace Windows or Window Panes
Thin glass windows are a huge cause of energy loss in homes. In the summer, the sun heats the window panes and that heat seeps into the home. In winter, the cold window panes cool your home. Older glass windows also have inadequate sealing that can allow cold air and heat in.
Windowpane replacement with energy-efficient glass along with new seals or caulk around your window can reduce energy bills and make your home more comfortable. There are good choices and better choices of glass depending on your location. Homes in the north will need a glass that can handle colder temperatures.
Energy-efficient windows for mobile homes can be double or triple-paned. These can also have insulating gas, giving you an even better performance.
Windowpane replacement is a cost-effective way to make your mobile home more energy-efficient. .
Make sure the entrances to your manufactured home are also keeping the heat in. Doors made from insulated steel and fiberglass are both safer and more energy-efficient than standard foam core doors. We’ve discussed mobile home doors quite a bit because new steel front doors are the best home improvement you can do based on return on investment.
Add New Insulation to Your Mobile Home
You could be losing a lot of heat if the roof cavity and underbelly of your mobile home is not insulated very well.
A well-insulated roof can reduce heating costs by 15%. Replacing or installing insulation for your mobile home underbelly is another great way to make your mobile home more energy-efficient.
Related: Guide to Mobile Home Insulation
The three common methods used to install mobile home roof insulation include:
- Inside or ceiling drilling and tube blowing
- External drilling and tube blowing
- Opening the roof and filling the cavity with Blown fiberglass insulation
Save Energy in the Kitchen
There are various ways to save energy in the kitchen.
Reduce cooking time by using a pressure cooker or placing lids on your pots and pans.
An Instant Pot is a popular kitchen appliance these days. You can cook a full chicken in just a few minutes. I like mine but admittedly I’m a little scared to release the steam when it’s finished cooking.
Another great tip I found was to not use a microwave to defrost foods. Try to plan your meals so that you can defrost whatever you need in the refrigerator.
Energy-efficient appliances are a smart investment, especially for cooking. Most of us already know that we shouldn’t use the oven for small meals. A little toaster oven or air fryer is great for meals for one or two people.
I recently learned that there’s a fine line when it comes to filling your freezer and refrigerator. I had always heard that a full freezer took less energy to cool than an empty one but you need to be careful to make sure the condenser and vents aren’t blocked.
Mobile homes are smaller and can become hot in summer because of the sun. However, their primary source of heat in the summer is from the kitchen, especially when you are cooking.
A good fan and vent that moves heat and steam out of your kitchen is necessary in most kitchens, especially in smaller homes.
Replace Ordinary Light Bulbs with Modern Energy Efficient Lighting
In most homes, approximately 12% of the energy bill is the energy used for lighting.
You can improve your energy bill by replacing older light bulbs with energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) or LED lights. Lights should also be switched off when not needed and cleaning your fixtures can make a huge difference (I was amazed when I cleaned my ceiling fan light – it had been neglected for a long while).
Older mobile homes can be energy efficient and comfortable!
Besides ensuring that your HVAC system is always properly maintained, two of the best improvements you can make is to insulate the underbelly and the roof and replace your windows, or at least the glass in your windows if possible.
Replacing your underbelly insulation and installing energy-efficient windows may cost a bit but the improvements will give you a quick return on your investment.