Home Energy Efficiency Tips
As temperatures heat up this summer, remember that energy efficiency can keep you cool while saving money and preserving the earth's energy resources.
Being energy efficient can make a big difference to the cost of your energy bill. It doesn’t always need a big investment in time or money to make sure you’re wasting less energy and saving more.
TOP 15 TIPS
- Wash clothes in cold water. There will be no difference to compare with washing in warm water, but it can help you to save money. Try and you will be impressed by the results. Heating water can account for 14 to 25 percent of the energy consumed in your home. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F) and save energy (and avoid a surprise faucet-scalding).
- Programmable thermostats can save up to $150 a year on energy costs when used properly. Use one that can automatically turn off your cooling system when you are not home, and turn your system on in time for you to arrive home to a cooled house.
- Use your window shades. Close blinds on the sunny side in summer to keep out the hot sun, and open them in winter to bring in warm rays.
- Turn off all lights, appliances and electronics not in use. A power strip can help turn off multiple items at once. (Sometimes the simplest things are really effective!)
- Use low-flow faucets and shower heads to save on water bills.
- Clean or change filters regularly. A dirty furnace or A/C filter will slow down air flow and make the system work harder to keep you warm or cool.
- Reduce water heater temperature to 130° F to save energy.
- Placing lamps or TV sets near your room air-conditioning thermostat can cause the air conditioner to run longer than necessary because the thermostat senses heat from the appliances. Set them apart and save energy.
- Lighting makes up about 10 percent of home energy costs. Save up to 75 percent of that energy by replacing incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). They also last longer, saving money on replacements.
- Running your air conditioning at 78°F instead of 72°F can save between 6 and 18 percent on your cooling bill. The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be, so set your thermostat as high as possible during the summer months.
- Well-planned landscaping isn’t just for aesthetics -- properly placed trees around the house can save between $100 and $250 annually.
- On average, households lose about 20 percent of their heated and cooled air through the duct system to the outside. To avoid wasting energy, have your ducts inspected to ensure they’re sealed properly and insulated if necessary.
- If you use air conditioning, a ceiling fan will allow you to raise the thermostat setting about 4°F with no reduction in comfort. Just make sure to turn it off when you leave the room (fans cool people, not rooms).
- By using the microwave, toaster or a counter-top grill rather than an oven, you’ll use less energy and avoid excess heat that increases room temperature.
- Leaving a computer on all day can cost about 21 cents per day, or about $75 per year. Unplug electronics and appliances when not in use – a task made easier by using multiple-outlet strips, which can turn everything off with the flip of a switch.
For all of your home energy and HVAC needs, check out https://hsehomecomfort.com.