Energy consumption in the U.S. is comparable to that of other industrialized countries, but the rate at which it is growing has caused concern among environmental experts.
Homeowners are often unaware of how much energy they use or the ways in which they can cut down their consumption. Here are some easy changes you can make to your home that will increase its energy efficiency.
1. Rebates for Energy Efficient Appliances
Many utility companies offer large rebates on more efficient appliances, making it cheaper, in the long run, to invest in an energy-efficient fridge, washing machine, or dishwasher.
This is a great way to reduce the initial cost of upgrading your appliances while still saving money in the long run.
2. Programmable Thermostats
Setting your thermostat to turn on before you get home or go off a few minutes before you wake up will allow the house to warm up or cool down so that you come home or wake up to a more comfortable temperature. Doing this a few hours a week can save you as much as 10% of your heating costs, so it’s well worth it!
A great place to start is by setting the clock for when you normally leave in the morning and turning down your thermostat at night. You can set it even further ahead if desired; just make sure not to forget about it!
3. Power Strips
Power strips are great for conserving electricity around the house. Leaving appliances plugged into power strips rather than directly into the wall outlet lets you control which devices are drawing power.
For example, you can turn off all your entertainment equipment (television, game consoles, etc.) at once by simply unplugging the power strip. This also allows you to reduce vampire energy loss by turning them completely off when not in use.
4. LED Lights
LED lightbulbs burn cooler and use less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs. They last up to 5 times longer as well!
These are a great way to save money on energy costs every month without changing too many aspects of how you live your life. You can even buy dimmable ones that work with traditional dimmer switches.
5. Powering Devices Through A Smart Plug or Kill-A-Watt Meter
This method is slightly more involved than the others, but it allows you to track how much energy certain devices use so that you can moderate their usage whenever necessary.
These are great for preventing vampire energy loss by avoiding leaving your electronics on all night when they’re not in use.
6. Using Solar Power
Installing solar panels on the roof of your home is one of the best ways to keep energy costs down.
It’s an investment in the beginning, but it quickly pays for itself in almost no time. Get a solar battery installed in your home to store the energy so you can use it whenever you need to.
7. Insulation and Weather Stripping
Making sure your home is well insulated will help keep out drafts, preventing the loss of heated or cooled air through cracks in windows, doors, etc.
Weatherstripping can be added around doors and windows that don’t already have it to cut down on air leaks even further. These are pretty cheap home improvements that yield great results!
8. Change Your Showerhead
Modern shower heads with multiple spray settings waste a lot of water by spraying more than is necessary for a comfortable shower.
If you’re looking for an upgrade, look for a low-flow model that uses less water without giving up comfort.
9. Unplug Electronics
This is one of the most simple ways to avoid vampire energy loss, but people often forget about it!
Unplugging your microwave, television, etc., when not in use, will help cut down on phantom load and reduce how much you pay for electricity each month. It’s a quick fix that doesn’t require any major changes or investments.
10. Turn Down The Water Heater Temperature
Keeping the water heater temperature set at 120 degrees Fahrenheit uses less energy than a lower setting does while still maintaining a comfortable shower experience.
Getting this change made by a professional can cost you some money upfront, but it will save you quite a bit of money on your energy bills going forward.
There are many ways to increase your home’s energy efficiency, and the tips we’ve provided should help you get started on thinking about how you can conserve electricity in your own home. Some require more effort than others, but all of them will help you reduce your energy usage and cut down on the money you spend each month.