Friday, 22 March 2019
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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

Home Energy Tips to Save You Cash

Written by Posted On Thursday, 08 March 2018 10:21

When it comes to going green, nothing has a bigger impact than reducing the amount of energy your household uses. It’s important to calculate or have records of your monthly energy costs as a baseline to compare against after you implement changes or upgrades. The US Department of Energy has a great resource that will show you the estimated energy use of appliances and electronics found here.

Biggest Impact Changes:

  • Heating & Air

Aside from that there are some general rules we can assume about most households here in the united states. Heating and cooling are going to be the biggest energy expense in any home. It takes a lot of power and energy to keep your abode climate controlled so it’s a good idea to keep up the maintenance on your furnace and air conditioning units. Even something as simple as regular checking and replacing your air filter can make a big difference in energy costs on a year over year basis, especially if the rest of the unit is running smoothly and does not need replacement.

  • Water Heating

The next biggest expense in most households is water heating. Just like it takes a lot of energy and power to keep your home climate controlled, it takes a lot of energy to keep water heated on a consistent basis. If you have a traditional tank style electric, gas, propane or fuel oil operated water heater, it may be a good idea to upgrade to an energy star rated model. It can save you about 300 bucks a year just in water heating costs, and typically pays for itself within a few years.

Smaller (But Still Important) Changes:

  • Lighting

If you haven’t upgraded the lightbulbs in your place, it may be a good idea to do so sooner than later. Typically, your local energy company will supply you with some to get you started which helps offset the initial cost of new CFL or LED lightbulbs.

  • Insulation

There are several key areas of your home to assess if adequate insulation exists. The first being the attic, it’s recommended homeowners have 12-15 inches of attic insulation. Next would be your water pipes, insulating these pipes in your home can raise the water temperature in your home by about 2-4 degrees Fahrenheit saving money on your water heating costs. Sealing windows with cellophane and hair dryer can work wonders on stopping drafts of cold air during winter.

  • Programmable Thermostats

These are most likely the easiest way to save much on your energy costs. There are a ton of different models on the market, but you don’t have to break the bank here. Any model that allows you to set times when you are away, and home can save a bunch of money. Here’s a link to the amazon search result to get you started. You can see models range in price from about 300 to 40 bucks on average. With a properly programmed thermostat you can save almost 200 dollars a year on your energy costs.

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