Many homeowners falsely believe that the only way to save money on their energy bills is to freeze all winter or sweat through the summer. Luckily, there are a number of home energy efficiency tips that can easily be implemented in any home.
Caulk windows and doors
According to the Energy Information Administration, as much as one third of a home’s heat loss is due to improperly insulated windows and doors. If you notice pockets of cold air around windows or doors, try applying caulk around the frames to seal any small holes and gaps. For windows with moveable parts, reapplying weather stripping is recommended. For most homeowners, the US Department of Energy estimates that the cost of the supplies can be recouped through savings on utility bills in less than a year.
Use drapes and curtains
Putting heavy drapes or curtains over windows is another way to reduce energy loss. Some draperies are specially made with thermal panels designed to prevent the loss of warm and cool air. When curtains are used throughout a home, they can help minimize drafts and may reduce heat loss by up to 25%.
Install a programmable thermostat
Digital or programmable thermostats allow homeowners to set the temperature in their homes for specific settings at specific times. Doing this means there is no loss of heating; if no one is home, you can alter the temperature so the heating or air conditioning does not run. Most digital thermostats are also more accurate than their traditional mercury counterparts, allowing you to get a more exact temperature setting.
Unplug when you can
Unplugging televisions, DVD players, computers, electronics, or other appliances when they are not in use can save energy over time. Likewise, using large appliances less can also help save energy. Avoid using the washing machine for single items; wait until you have a full load to save both energy and water. If the weather is warm, try drying clothes outside on a clothes line instead of using the dryer. If your dishwasher has just a few plates and cups, try hand washing them instead of running a full cycle.
Turn off the lights
It’s something our parents preached to us when we were children – turn off the lights when you leave the room. But can it really save that much money? While leaving a light on for a short period of time may not be a major energy waster, leaving lights on for longer periods of time may be. For example, turning off all the lights in your home before a long vacation could save you as much as $50.
If you have older appliances, consider upgrading them to newer, more energy efficient models. The Energy Star product labels, which can be found on everything from light bulbs to electronics, help consumers identify products that have met strict efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy.
If you have contacts about how to help make your home more efficient, contact the staff at L & L Contractors today! Our experts can help work with you to identify ways to help make your home more energy efficient, saving you money in utilities and helping to protect the environment for future generations.