10 Energy-Savings Tips to Start the New Year Off Right
By conserving energy in the home, you’ll be able to cut down on your monthly utilities, lessen pollution, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help you live a greener lifestyle. Whether you want to go green in your home this year or just want to lower your energy bill, here are 10 energy-saving tips to implement.
1. Raise the temperature on your thermostat for A/C
This is perhaps one of the easier tasks you can do to save energy, considering it doesn’t cost you any money (in fact, it saves you money in the long run) and requires almost zero effort on your part. The Department of Energy recommends raising the temperature of your home to somewhere between 70 and 78 degrees. The smaller the difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your cooling bills will be—this is especially important to consider during the summer months.
2. Clean your air filter
Dirty air filters can overwork your air conditioner, causing it to use more energy. Additionally, going an extended period without cleaning your air filter can decrease the indoor air quality of your home and circulate allergens back into your air. Get into a habit of changing your air filter at least once every three months.
3. Turn off lights that aren’t in use
Another easy way to save energy this year is to turn off all lights and appliances that aren’t in use. If you’re not in a room, make sure the lights and fans are turned off—a power strip can help turn off multiple items at once. You could even go so far as to unplug appliances when you’re not using them (though a little more time-consuming, this can save you a few extra dollars on your energy bill month over month).
4. Air dry your clothes
Instead of drying your clothes in a dryer, hang your clothes outside on a line to dry. You’ll save energy and avoid raising the temperature of your home with heat-generating appliances.
5. Upgrade to energy efficient devices
Another way you can save energy is to upgrade your broken or old appliances to energy efficient ones, specifically ENERGY STAR certified appliances. Simply see if your washer, dryer, refrigerator, or other major appliance is covered by a warranty and get it replaced as soon as possible.
6. Switch to LED bulbs
LED bulbs use 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs. Not to mention, they last almost 50 times longer than traditional bulbs, saving you money on energy costs. Change the bulbs in your lamps, fans, and ceilings.
7. Properly insulate your home
To prevent warm air from leaking into your home, inspect your windows and doors for small openings and seal any holes with caulk. If you notice a window screen has holes in it, patch it up or replace the screen altogether. By taking steps to insulate your home, you can save up to 20% on heating and cooling bills.
8. Use sunlight to your advantage
Choose window treatments that allow you to use natural light while reducing heat loss and gain. Blinds, shades, curtains, and window films can limit heat gain when outdoor temperatures rise. To be as energy efficient as possible, open shades in the winter and close them in the summer.
9. Protect your water heater
Add an insulating blanket to an old water heater—this could reduce heat losses by 25%–45% and save roughly 4%–9% in heating costs.
10. Turn your computer off
Instead of leaving your computer on all the time, put it in sleep mode so it uses less energy during periods of inactivity. By setting your computer to fall asleep, you can reduce your energy bill by almost $30 each month.
This article is part of a group of bloggers that I am participating with to help you learn self-sufficient skills, save money, live a more frugal lifestyle, and live a healthier life that will help you and your family learn to be more self-reliant. So please check out all the valuable information on Self Reliance Challenge for 2019.