It’s no secret that an efficient furnace is an important part of surviving an Ottawa winter. In January, the average daily temperature is between -15 and -6 degrees Celsius. In fact, Ottawa, as Canada’s capital, makes the list of top 10 coldest capital cities in the world.
So for Rachel Blouin and her husband, living in Ottawa means paying attention to home heating — and cooling, too, because it’s also no secret that Ottawa enjoys particularly steamy summers. For the Blouins, the furnace and air conditioner are crucial parts of their home.
So when the central air conditioner in their end-unit row house started to make strange noises, the Blouins called in their Ottawa heating and cooling contractor. He found the problem, and pointed out that their old furnace — original to their 1992 home — was also in need of replacement.
Home energy audit
Blouin wanted to make a wise, energy-saving choice when replacing her furnace and air conditioner, so she called in an expert to explain the various options available. She booked a home energy audit with an Ontario Home Energy Advisor, who conducted a detailed energy audit on her Ottawa home.
During the audit, Blouin learned about the various Canada and Ontario government grants she could get for replacing her old heating and cooling equipment with a new high-efficiency gas furnace and an Energy Star-rated central air conditioner.
Blouin says she also learned a lot about her Ottawa home. For example, she was surprised to discover how much air was escaping through the home’s attic and cracks in the chimney, creating drafts that made the home feel less comfortable.
Air sealing and weather stripping
The Home Energy Advisor explained several cheap and easy ways to fix the home’s drafts, by weatherstripping doors and windows, and caulking gaps between the chimney bricks.
Learning about how much energy they could save, and grants and rebates they could earn for making energy-saving renovations and improvements, inspired the Blouins to start a whole-home energy renovation: “Seeing as we needed to do the furnace, we decided to do the air conditioning and windows, too,” says Blouin.
After all the renovations and improvements, Blouin says, her Ottawa home feels more comfortable. The heat from the new high-efficiency furnace is more evenly distributed thanks to its variable-speed DC motor, which circulates warm air and ventilates the home even when the furnace isn't burning fuel.
The home has fewer drafts because the new high-efficiency Energy Star-rated windows seal tight, and the new central air conditioning system is noticeably quieter and uses less energy. Blouin says she’s saving about $15 per month on her natural gas bills and about $10 per month on electricity — amounts that can add up quickly.
The home energy assessment did more than help change her home, says Blouin. It’s changed her thinking, too. “We are a little bit more conscious of our environment,” she says. “We learned about ways to be more energy efficient so we don’t destroy our ecology.”
Next winter, even if Ottawa is one of the world’s chilliest cities, Blouin’s home will be a cozy refuge. Who knows, she might even convince a few neighbours to follow her lead. “Everyone on our street would benefit and learn a lot from these audits,” she says. “It saves them money in the long run.”
Ottawa homeowners can choose from a shopping list of renovation grants from the Government of Canada:
Ottawa homeowners can also get ...
And there’s more.
Take advantage of Government of Canada ecoENERGY grants for home energy renovation in Ottawa:
Enjoy all the benefits
Do it right
Each Ottawa home has its own specific energy-savings needs, and yours is no different. The right renovations add up to big savings. By following the expert advice of a certified Ontario energy advisor, you’ll make the energy renovations or "retrofits" that are right for your Ottawa home — and help improve your energy costs and the Ottawa, Ontario environment.
Energy renovations help ...
And that’s not all. Here are more benefits ...
When you improve your home in Ottawa, you also make a difference to the rest of the world. You’ll help address important global issues like ...
And there’s even more. Click here to learn how Ottawa homeowners like you are saving thousands of dollars and tonnes of greenhouse gases every year, by making the right energy-saving home renovations. Ottawa Ontario homeowners can make a difference.
Learn more about Renovation Rebates in Ottawa Ontario ...
To qualify you need a Ottawa
home energy audit before your renovations.
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