Every month when the bills arrive you wonder how to save energy. In the United States, more than 50% of a home’s electricity usage goes into air conditioning and space heating.
Following close behind is water heating, refrigeration, and lighting, at 27%. The remaining 21% goes for device usage such as your TVs, cooking appliances, washers and dryers, computers, video games, etc.
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Changes to your home and habits can have a huge impact on your long-term cost savings. If you want to learn how renewable energy can impact your home, read on.
Winter Warming Tips
When the weather turns cold set your thermostat at 68 degrees or below. Each degree higher on the thermostat uses 3% more energy.
A programmable or internet-connected thermostat will save you money by dialing down the temperature when you are away or asleep. You can then set it to bring the temperature back up before you arrive home or get up in the morning.
Change or clean the filters on your furnace every month. Dirty filters make the system work harder to push warm air through. Adding caulk or weatherstripping to your windows will help prevent air loss, saving heat. If you have air coming in under your door purchase a draft-stop to lay along the edge.
You can also increase the temperature inside the home by opening your shades during the day on eastern and southern windows. This allows in the warmth of the sun during the day. Close them at night to insulate against the cold night air.
The warmth of a fireplace is wonderful on a cold winter night. When it is not in use make sure you close the damper to prevent heat loss out the chimney.
Light for Less
Light-Emitting Diode (LED) lights use about 75% less electricity and last approximately 50% longer than incandescent bulbs. Rather than lighting an entire room, use task lights to illuminate only the area you need. Make sure everyone turns off the lights when exiting a room, or consider installing motion sensor devices that automatically operate lighting.
If you like to leave on outdoor lighting, consider installing photocells on them. This allows them to be lit by solar energy rather than electricity, reducing operating costs.
Save on Electricity
We rely on electricity for the majority of household needs, including kitchen appliances, chargers, computers, entertainment centers, and more. Use timers and smart strips to power only those devices that need to stay on continuously. To conserve energy turn off any device that does not need a constant connection to electricity.
Purchase Energy Star products to reduce your electricity usage. Energy Star products include appliances, building products, data center equipment, electronics, heating, and cooling equipment, lighting, office equipment, and more.
Run your laundry and dishwashers only when you have a full load. Cleaning the lint filter on your dryer after each load allows it to dry more effectively, reducing the run time.
You may also want to consider solar panel installation to save up to 100% of your home’s electricity needs. Your renewable energy specialist will be able to assist you in determining the number of solar panels you need to create a home that operates on renewable energy.
How to Save Energy
Learning how to save energy is simply a matter of smart investing and changing your energy use habits. Now that you are on your way to a more energy-efficient home, we invite you to check out our other blogs for the more great information.