While we all use energy differently, in general, energy is mostly used for heating and cooling the home, with hot water coming in second.
Good energy habits help you save money and the way we use energy plays a big role in how much we’re paying for it. For example, if you leave the hot water running constantly while you’re shaving, you’re using a lot of hot water just to rinse the razor a few times.
Simple choices we make every day can go a long way to help us manage our energy use, cut costs and protect the environment around the year. Here are a few tips to help you conserve energy in your home.
1- Choose off-peak hours
Take advantage of lower energy prices during off-peak hours. Consider running your dishwasher, clothes washer and dryer early in the morning, in the evening or on weekends when electricity rates are lowest.
2- Use the dishwasher and washer wisely
Try to cut down on power by air drying instead of using the heater. Try washing your clothes in cold water to save hot water costs.
3- Use a programmable thermostat to reduce energy use.
Install a programmable thermostat to automate your heating and cooling. It makes it easier to reduce your energy use when you’re not home and when you’re sleeping.
4- Use your appliances properly
Did you know that an uncrowded fridge works more efficiently than a crowded one? However, a freezer works best when they are two-thirds full. When you’re using the dishwasher wait to do a full load. A half-empty dishwasher uses the same amount of energy as a full one.
5- Consider caulking and weather stripping
Plugging up air leaks is relatively inexpensive and delivers a great return summer and winter. Look for cracks around windows and doorframes. Also check the sill plate, where your home’s foundation meets the frame. It could be a big source of air leaks.
6- Find your top 10 locations for compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs
It pays to replace your most frequently used incandescent bulbs with CFLs. They use 75% less power and last up to 10 times as long.
7- Buy ENERGY STAR® Appliances
Save energy and fight climate change with ENERGY STAR qualified products. They use less energy, save money, and help protect the environment. According to ENERGY STAR, if just one in 10 homes used ENERGY STAR-qualified appliances, the impact could be compared to planting 1.7 million new acres of trees. Switching to these appliances is not only good for the environment, but is easy on your pocketbook. Although these appliances may cost more, you can reduce your energy bill by approximately $80 per year.
The age, condition and efficiency of your appliances plays a big role in how much energy you use, so it’s important to keep them in good working order, and at some point, consider upgrading to the most energy-efficient models.