Energy Efficiency in a Mobile Home on a Budget – Windows and Roofs

Improving energy efficiency in a mobile home is sometimes a difficult and expensive task if you do not know what to address. High pressure home improvement salesman will try to push you into very expensive upgrades that usually take a very long time to get the pay off. In a down economy nobody wants to waste their hard earned money on something that won’t perform the way it is advertised. I want to concentrate on very effective and affordable energy savings measures that will pay you back fast.

  • Windows – Replacement windows are the number one energy savings rip-offs. High end and name brand replacement windows are often the most expensive home improvement upgrade. The savings to investment ratio is very low with replacement window. This translates into a very long payback on the money spent. The only time you will get a high payback is if your existing windows are completely falling apart, letting a lot of outside air in and inside air out. This is where you will have a decent payback. You want to stay away from name brand windows, since they are usually the most expensive. I suggest researching a replacement window that is locally made and does not have name brand recognition. Being in a mobile home, custom windows will be needed. A local window manufacturer/installer will be able to do this at a low cost. This way you won’t pay for all the advertising. Make sure the company offers a lifetime warranty, this is standard among quality window manufacturers/installers. Remember, only if your windows really bad, you will have a potential for high energy savings. If they are not, consider inside storm windows instead.
  • Roof – An older mobile home typically has a flat or near flat metal roof. The space between the metal roof deck and the inside ceiling often has very little insulation in it, making the roof a large potential for energy loss. You can benefit the most from an insulated white rubber roof. This roof system is a one-piece white rubber membrane that covers the entire roof surface. An insulation board is installed onto the roof deck prior to the rubber being installed. This insulation needs to be at least an R-10 and usually 2″ thick. The added R-Value couple with the white surface dramatically reduces the heat loss and gain during the winter and summer months. People have reported saving up to 35% on their gas and electric.

Whenever you want to reduce your utility bills, you want to spend your money wisely. High pay-back with low investment cost is the recipe for improving energy efficiency in your mobile home.