Home is where the heart is; it’s also where a lot of your budget goes. Utility bills can add up dramatically over the years, and by making your home more efficient, you can save thousands of dollars over the course of your time there. While there are many drastic energy efficiency solutions, today we’ll look at some simple ones that you can do yourself in no time flat:
The simplest way for you to save power is to unplug your electronics when they’re not in use. Most electronics will still use power even when you’re not actively using them – that’s why your TV can turn on when your remote signals it to and why your microwave is always displaying the time. This power use is called standby or vampire power.
You can take an extra step to save energy by buying power strips. Plug in electronics you use together (like your home theatre or computer setup), then flip the power strip off when you stop using them. There are power strips with timers available, too – use these to automatically turn devices off after a certain time so you’ll never forget!
Change Your Lights
There are plenty of people out there still using old, incandescent light bulbs. You should get rid of those ASAP! They take up a lot more energy than their new CFL cousins, and they burn out more quickly, too.
Pay attention to how you’re lighting your home. Are you frequently turning on ambient lights in order to read or write? Consider buying task lighting, like small lamps, in order to save energy. You can turn off the bigger, more energy consuming ambient lights. What’s more, you’ll be able to see more easily with task lighting anyway!
Adjust Your Thermostat
You want to keep cool in the summer and warm in the winter – that’s why your home is climate controlled. The energy savings you can get by adjusting your thermostat just a couple of degrees can be amazing! You’ll probably hardly notice the difference a degree or two makes, but it will save you money.
What’s more, you can make other easy adjustments to your home to keep more comfortable no matter what time of season it is. Blackout curtains can keep your home warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer. A pair of slippers can keep you comfy when your floor is cold. Easy adjustments like these will reduce your reliance on your furnace and AC.
Going a step further, you can get a smart thermostat to save energy while you’re away. Set your thermostat to reduce AC or furnace use while you’re out of the house, then automatically bring the temperature back to comfortable levels for when you get home. Smart thermostats will also enable you to track energy use, so you’ll know exactly how much you save by adjusting the heat.
Smart technologies can help you in other ways, too. Smart light bulbs can be programmed to turn off automatically at a certain time each day, so you’ll never forget to switch off the lights. When you have a virtual assistant like Alexa, you can turn off your lights by voice – perfect for when you just got comfortable and don’t want to get up to turn them off yourself.
You’ll save a lot of energy if your home is properly insulated. Some kinds of insulation take a lot of effort – types like exterior insulation or floor insulation are wonderful, but they fall outside of what might be considered easy. Some insulation isn’t too difficult; blow-in insulation for attics that are easy to access can be a pretty good fix.
Opt for easy insulation wins. Weatherstrip your doors and windows. Check your building’s exterior and make sure any holes are patched. Check your roof for any broken or missing shingles and replace them. Insulate hot water pipes so they lose less heat.
Bonus Tip: Low-Flow Water Fixtures
This is a bonus tip because it’s quite short: 6 for the price of 5! Get low-flow faucets and shower heads; you’ll save a lot on your water bill, and you’ll have to heat less water, too. A two for one!