Toronto homeowner E. Thomas needed a bigger house. Sure, he could move — but since he and his wife had spent five years settling in to their 1927 brick home, it seemed simpler to finish the basement to gain some extra space.
When Thomas heard the Canadian and Ontario governments were giving grants for energy-saving renovations, the idea of renovating the basement sounded even more appealing. “It’s a no brainer,” he says. “It was unfinished, so we ripped everything out and started over.”
Home energy audit
To take advantage of government grants and rebates offered through Canada’s ecoENERGY Retrofit-Homes initiative and the Ontario Home Energy Savings program, Thomas had a home energy audit before he got started with the renovations on his Toronto home.
When an Ontario Home Energy Advisor visited his home for the initial audit, Thomas learned about the many ways he could renovate and improve his home to make it more energy efficient. He also learned about the many ways his home was losing energy, and how much money he was spending just to keep his home comfortable.
Thomas says he was surprised by how little insulation was actually in the attic of his Toronto home, which meant his home was losing a significant amount of heat through the roof. Adding together the roof, plus other heat loss trouble spots, like the basement walls, main walls, doors and windows, the Home Energy Advisor calculated the home’s total heat loss at 52,700 Btu/hour.
It might not mean much — until you consider that one Btu is about the same amount of energy as is produced by burning a single match. Imagine more than 50,000 matches burning, every hour. Preventing that kind of heat loss is best done with insulation — and in the case of Thomas’ Toronto home, lots of insulation indeed.
Windows and insulation
Thomas got started on his insulation improvements right away. He installed additional fiberglass batt insulation in his home’s attic, and added spray foam insulation to the basement. He replaced the home’s old front door with an Energy Star-rated door that provided even more insulation, and installed energy-efficient windows, Energy Star-rated for the Toronto climate zone. High-efficiency windows are insulated to keep heat from escaping through the panes of glass.
One of Thomas’ biggest renovation projects was a relatively simple one. He had a contractor fill the gaps in the basement’s foundation with foam insulation that expands and hardens into place, creating a tight seal wherever air previously moved between indoors and out.
This simple renovation, coupled with the Energy Star-rated windows, was an improvement that helped lower the home’s air leakage rate. By preventing air from moving between indoors and out, Thomas was able to effectively prevent drafts and keep the indoor temperature more comfortable and consistent.
Now, Thomas says, his Toronto home has a nice, warm, dry basement. The home has no more drafty windows, and the upstairs bedrooms now maintain the same temperature as the downstairs living area. “There is a constant temperature in the house,” says Thomas. “I don’t think people realize how much heat [is lost] through the basement.”
Toronto homeowners can choose from a shopping list of renovation grants from the Government of Canada:
Toronto homeowners can also get ...
And there’s more.
Take advantage of Government of Canada ecoENERGY grants for home energy renovation in Toronto:
Enjoy all the benefits
Do it right
Each Toronto 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 Toronto home — and help improve your energy costs and the Greater Toronto environment.
Energy renovations help ...
And that’s not all. Here are more benefits ...
When you improve your home in Toronto, 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 Toronto homeowners like you are saving thousands of dollars and tonnes of greenhouse gases every year, by making the right energy-saving home renovations. Toronto Ontario homeowners can make a difference.
Learn more about Renovation Rebates in Toronto Ontario ...
To qualify you need a Toronto
home energy audit before your renovations.
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