10 WAYS TO MONEY ON ENERGY BILLS
Easy to start, easy to make money, easy way to a better financed life.
Energy costs money. It is something that everyone knows. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics claims that an average American household spends about $3,836 annually on public services, utilities, and fuel. Anything that is to be done to conserve energy to retain back some money that was one should use on energy consumption is a welcome development.
Let us explore ten practical ways to cut down energy consumption and save some money back.
USE YOUR THERMOSTAT
The US Department of Energy (DOE) recommends running your air conditioner at 78 degrees and your furnace at 68 degrees. It makes you comfortable at home while reducing the costs and demand on the power grid. This is where your thermostat comes in; you can use it to turn up the temperature during the summer and reduce it during winter as this would save you some reasonable amount of money.
A programmable thermostat allows you to increase or decrease the temperature of your home when you are not at home. It brings down the difference in temperature between your home and the surrounding environment, which then reduces the loss of energy. If you do not have a programmable thermostat, you can adjust the one you have manually.
A reasonable heating control would let you:
- Set your heating systems and hot water to turn on and off whenever you need them to
- Heat only parts of your home that you choose
- Set different temperatures for different parts of your home
Altogether, they work to keep your home at the temperature that you are comfortable with without energy waste.
If you are using ceiling fans in your home, ensure that you use them properly. Energy Star, a research program of the Department of Energy (DOE) and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), gives that setting ceiling fans to spin counter clockwise during summer pulls the hot air up to the ceiling and away from the living space. Setting it to run clockwise in winter allows the ceiling fans to blow the hot air down.
ENERGY STAR APPLIANCES
Some electrical appliances such as dryers, washing machines, refrigerators, freezers, air-conditioners, etc. have been identified as energy efficient by the Energy Star program. Anytime you want to buy an appliance, ensure that you look for the Energy Star label. By buying appliances with this label, the devices will be energy-saving, which will, in turn, reduce the amount you are supposed to spend on energy bills.
Even though these may be energy efficient, you should not increase their numbers in your home as this will defeat the overall purpose of this article.
When not in use, home electronics such as DVD players, television sets, stereos, grinders, mixers, and any other plugged-in device do consume a little amount of energy even when they are off. To avoid this, completely unplug these devices when you are not using them. You can also use a surge suppressor to turn them completely off till you are ready to use them. The US Department of Energy (DOE) states that power-stripping application to control energy usage by appliances not in use at the moment can save you $100 off your annual energy bill.
ENERGY-EFFICIENT LIGHT BULBS
Incandescent bulbs consume lots of energy so try to replace any incandescent bulb you have in your home with energy-saving, fluorescent bulbs. The DOE says that using energy bulbs approved by Energy Star can help the average American household save $45 yearly.
No matter the bulb you use, make sure you turn them off whenever you leave any room. You can also install timers in rooms that are not often in use, such as laundry rooms, basements, garages, etc. These timers switch off the lights after a pre-determined amount of time in your absence or if you forgot to turn them off.
The utilization low-flow fixture to conserve water for your shower, toilets, and faucets can be very helpful in saving some considerable amount of energy. Not just installing them, find out any leak in your taps, toilets or faucets and fix them or outrightly replace them. Whenever you are brushing your teeth or doing the dishes, turn off the spigot. We are not talking about water here but also energy because conserving water would also save the energy used in heating them, thereby reducing energy cost.
SEAL AND INSULATE
Proper insulation helps to reduce the energy cost spent on heating the home by restricting the flow of air into and out of the house. Endeavor to check your attic at regular intervals. You would not be able to see the floor joist if your attic is not finished. But in the case where you see them, know that your attic has been exhausted then you have to add more insulation.
Also, check out if there are any holes in the exterior walls, try to find them out and seal them as warm air might be escaping from such openings. Places that are more liable to have such holes are places where pipes come into your home, around window and doors, etc. If you have exposed pipes in your home, wrap them with insulation and do this also to your boilers.
CHANGE OR EMPTY YOUR FILTERS
Most furnace manufacturers had advised that customers change the filter on their furnace regularly. It is recommended that you change your furnace filters monthly or at worse, quarterly for the furnace to keep operating at its peak efficiency. Also, make sure that you empty the filter after every usage because the accumulation of lint on the filter will cause it to do more work and consume more energy.
GET A NEW BOILER:
A more significant percentage of what you spend annually on energy bills goes to heating, even to the tune of about $200 more than half of your energy bills. A significant difference maker to your energy bills will be to change your old and worn-out boiler for a new one with the modern-day energy-saving design.
If you let go of your old G-rated boiler (that has a programmer and a room thermostat) and replace it with a new A-rated boiler of the condensing model (also with a programmer), you can save yourself up to $200 yearly from the bill you currently pay for energy consumption for a typical semi-detached house. For those who do not have heating controls in their homes, installing them all at once will save quite some amount of money.
SERVICE YOUR APPLIANCES REGULARLY
Make it a habit to always contact a certified technician to run tests on your appliances and repair any, if there be any fault. Do not wait for them to get damaged before putting a call through. A malfunctioning appliance might be consuming far more energy than it is supposed to consume, and this would have a telling effect on your billings. To avoid this is to discover it early, which can be done by a certified technician.
Alas!!! We have brought you the ten tested-and-trusted tips with which you can reduce your energy billings. Some of them need a bit of spending, more like an investment that pays off over time while others are just the application of common sense. Try out some or all of these tips and start saving off your energy bills today.
You can also become a Utility Warehouse member to make and save money on your energy bills by simply clicking this link here.