11 Feb 15 Easy Ways for Saving Energy at Home
Save money and lower your utility bills with these tips on how to save energy at home
Saving energy at home is easier than you think.
Dramatic reductions in heating, cooling and electricity costs can be accomplished through very simple changes, most of which you can do yourself.
There are many easy, effective things that you can do, with little investment and little or no DIY experience, to save energy at home. Some of the tips are simple to do. Others require more effort and investment, but promise big savings over the years.
Ready to save on your utility bills by saving energy at home? Here’s a list of 15 ideas to get you started.
15 Ideas for saving energy at home
Unplug devices when they’re not in use.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), “In the average home, 75 percent of the electricity used to power home electronics is consumed while the products are turned off.” Save money and enery by unplugging appliances and electronics when you are not using them, or by plugging them into a power strip, and turning the strip off when they are not in use
Change Your Light Bulbs
One of the least expensive and most effective changes you can make in your home is replacing your light bulbs. According to Energy Star, one of its qualified compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL), which cost just a few dollars, “will save about $30 over its lifetime and pay for itself in about 6 months. It uses 75 percent less energy and lasts about 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb.”
Install a Programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats work by automatically adjusting your home’s temperature to your schedule, keeping it comfortable only when you need it to be. If you don’t already adjust your thermostat throughout the day, a programmable thermostat could save you as much as 15 percent on heating and cooling costs. Programmable thermostats can save up to $150 a year on energy costs when used properly. Use one that can automatically turn off your cooling system when you are not home, and turn your system on in time for you to arrive home to a cooled house.
Using less water will lower your water bill. And when you use less hot water, you’ll also see savings in your gas bill, or your electric bill if you have an electric water heater.
Plant Trees and Shrubs
Planting shade trees around your home can lower your summer energy bill by reducing your home’s exposure to the sun. Well-planned landscaping isn’t just for aesthetics — properly placed trees around the house can save between $100 and $250 annually.
Move lamps or TV sets away from your thermostat
Placing lamps or TV sets near your room air-conditioning thermostat can cause the air conditioner to run longer than necessary because the thermostat senses heat from the appliances. Set them apart and save energy.
Replace Incandescent bulbs
Lighting makes up about 10 percent of home energy costs. Save up to 75 percent of that energy by replacing incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). They also last longer, saving money on replacements.
Run Your AC at 78°F
Running your air conditioning at 78°F instead of 72°F can save between 6 and 18 percent on your cooling bill. The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be, so set your thermostat as high as possible during the summer months. For additional savings, raise your thermostat to 82 degrees or higher when you’re away.
Have Air Ducts Inspected
On average, households lose about 20 percent of their heated and cooled air through the duct system to the outside. To avoid wasting energy, have your ducts inspected to ensure they’re sealed properly and insulated if necessary.
Turn down Your Water Heater Temperature
Heating water can account for 14 to 25 percent of the energy consumed in your home. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F) and save energy (and avoid a surprise faucet-scalding).
Use Microwave or toaster more instead of oven
By using the microwave, toaster or a counter-top grill rather than an oven, you’ll use less energy and avoid excess heat that increases room temperature.
Turn Off Your Computer
Leaving a computer on all day can cost about 21 cents per day, or about $75 per year. Unplug electronics and appliances when not in use – a task made easier by using multiple-outlet strips, which can turn everything off with the flip of a switch.
Limit the time you run your pool pump:
In the summer months, run your pool pump for six hours a day. For the winter, reduce to four hours a day.
Turn off your ceiling fan
Turn off your ceiling fan when you leave the room. A fan that runs all the time costs up to $7 a month.
Replace old showerheads
Replace old, high-flow showerheads with water-efficient showerheads and save up to $80 a year.
That’s it. Now you have your checklist to save on your utility bills by saving energy at home. The checklist for what you’ll do with the savings is up to you!