Your response to rising energy costs

Your response to rising energy costs< /p> UPDATE DAY

In 2022, heating and cooling costs will rise sharply. Now is the time to plan the response. 

Electricity, natural gas, propane, fuel oil. All are increasing, except, for the moment, firewood. However, there are ways to counter these increases. 

Next April 1, Hydro-Québec will increase its rates by 2.6%, the largest increase since 2015. According to Hydro, this will result in a monthly increase of $1.93 for a 5 1⁄2, from 3, $60 for a small house and $5.89 for a large one, or $23.16 to $70.68 annually. 

On December 1, the Régie de l'énergie approved a rate increase for natural gas sold by Énergir of 6% to 19.5% depending on the type of customer. Énergir explains that for a single-family home consuming 160 m3 of natural gas annually, the annual bill will increase from $1,080 to $1,240. 

In the fall, the newspaper National Postreported an explosion in the cost of propane gas, up to 296% in some parts of the country. Prices have never been so high for more than seven years. 


How to react? If you search the internet, you will find all sorts of lists of renovations to save energy.  

“The most relevant measures from the point of view of energy efficiency and your budget often come at the end of these lists,” comments Paula Duchesne, communications manager for Écohabitation, a support organization for sustainable projects.&nbsp ;

While some work can be very expensive, which does not financially justify the energy savings achieved, Ms. Duchesne mentions that it is possible to save 20% to 30% on average per simple and inexpensive measures. 

Écohabitation has conducted a study in this direction with the Trottier Energy Institute. It determines the most effective means, in order of cost. Obviously, the desired efficiency varies depending on the building and the technology or materials. 


One option is heating wood or pellet. 

A device with a capacity of 40,000 BTU costs $2,000 to $4,000, installation included (the installation must be done according to a standard approved by your insurer: contact them before taking action). It must comply with the most stringent standards, some municipalities require, to emit low GHGs. 

It takes about eight cords of wood to heat a 1,500 square foot house for 180 days, or $825 to $1000. One winter will require burning about 150 40lb bags of pellets (about $800). 

Expect to incur a hike in your home insurance, which may negate the desired savings .  


Construction site / Return on investment  

  • Replace shower heads with low-flow models: 4 months < /li>
  • Improve sealing (interior and exterior caulking): 6 months  
  • Insulate the attic: 1.5 years  
  • Adding low-e coatings to windows: 3 years  < /li>
  • Insulate the walls of the foundation: 5 years  
  • Install a high-efficiency heat pump: 6 years 
  • Insulate above-ground walls further: 6 years  
  • Replace the heating system fuel oil by an electrical system: 7.5 years  
  • Install a gray water recovery system: 11 years  
  • Replace doors and windows: + 20 years   

Source : Ecohome

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