Do you ever look at your utility bill at the end of the month and wonder how it possibly got so high? You’re not alone. Many homeowners are unaware of minor problems that end up costing them big bucks in the long run. These five tips will make sure that you save energy and protect your wallet.
1. Check Your Doors and Windows
Leaky doors and windows leave buildings prone to drafts, insect infestation, and water damage. To protect your home from expensive temperature fluctuations and deterioration, invest in weather seal technology. These relatively inexpensive solutions will save you money on heating and cooling costs.
2. Beware “Vampire” Electronics
Unfortunately, flicking the “off” switch doesn’t always mean that your devices and appliances are entirely turned off. Electronics that remained plugged into wall outlets while turned off still receive standby energy, which increases your household energy consumption and inflates your utility bill. A simple way to combat this is being conscientious about your technology usage. When you are done using the toaster and coffeemaker, unplug them. Disconnect cell phones and computers when they are fully charged. Shut off the television and turn off the lights before you leave the house. Sustainability benefits both the environment and your wallet.
3. Invest in Energy Efficient Lightbulbs
It is time to say goodbye to incandescent lightbulbs. Up to 90% of the energy used by traditional lightbulbs is given off as heat rather than actual light. To combat that waste, opt for light-emitting diodes (LEDs) or compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). Both cost slightly more than incandescent lightbulbs upfront, but they use much less energy and last significantly longer, so you will be saving money in the long term.
4. Change Your Filters
If you have a heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) unit, you need to clean and change your filters on a regular basis. Dirty filters obstruct airflow and force your HVAC unit to consume more energy to circulate air. Additionally, failing to maintain your filters can lead to dust and grime build-up, which will result in spendy repair fees in the future.
5. Adjust Your Thermostat
Everyone likes to exist in their preferred temperature zone, but that can cost a pretty penny. If possible, avoid cranking your thermostat up and down in the winter and summer months. Instead, regulate your temperature with open, breezy windows—or alternatively, cozy blankets and fuzzy socks. Be smart about when you heat and cool your house, too. When you leave for work or go to sleep, turn your thermostat down.
Electricity is a precious—and, at times, expensive—resource. Make sure to consume energy wisely by incorporating these five eco-friendly solutions and practices into your home.