News and events around the local home-and-garden scene.

Power rating: If you saw an increase in your electric bill last month, it’s probably due to the end of the state-mandated rate cap, which could lead to a 10-percent rate hike on electricity delivery. “I’ve been getting so many phone calls from people in large houses who are suddenly very interested in how to cut down on their utility bills,” says Dutch Schwertner, founder of Green Stone Energy in Frazer. For them and us, Schwertner offers his top five ways to make a home more energy efficient:

1. Air-seal areas identified through an energy-audit/blower-door test. A blower-door test depressurizes the home to detect air leakage.

2. Add insulation to increase your home’s thermal boundaries. “Some houses only have 6 inches of insulation where there should be at least 12-15,” says Schwertner. “It can make a dramatic impact.”

- Advertisement -

3. Tune up and/or clean your HVAC system.

4. Replace regular lightbulbs with CFL versions wherever appropriate.

5. Install Energy Star-approved replacement windows.

For more information, visit greenstoneenergyllc.com.

Our Best of the Main Line & Western Suburbs Party is July 25!