Wasting energy not only has a negative effect on the environment but it will also impact your monthly budget and adversely affect your wallet. With a very little effort and strategic planning you can easily reduce your monthly utility bill. With winter just around the corner, here are a few tips to help you transform your residence into an energy efficient home.
Appliance Tips for an Energy Efficient Home
- Only operate your dishwasher when it is completely full
- Rather than manually rinsing dishes, simply scape them off before loading them into the dishwasher.
- Cook small dishes on top of the stove in lieu of heating the entire oven.
- Close your fireplace damper when not in use.
- When burning wood in your fireplace, reduce your furnace thermostat to 55 degrees. While the fireplace will not heat your home, this will reduce the amount of heated air being drawn out your chimney while using your fireplace.
- Opening a window that is adjacent to your fireplace will provide a source of fresh air for the fire and reduce the amount of air that is drawn into your fireplace from other rooms in your home.
Heating System Tips
- Replace furnace filters & air conditioning filters on a regular basis.
- Lowering the temperature by just one degree in the winter will reduce your monthly bill. Put away your shorts and grab a sweater.
- Install a programmable thermostat and program it to reduce the heat when you are away for long periods of time, as well as the middle of the night.
- Limit the use of bathroom & kitchen exhaust fans which direct heated air outside.
- Open curtains during the day to let the sunshine in. Close them at night for added insulation.
Water Heater Tips
- Lower the temperature of your water heater to 120 degrees.
- Upgrade to an on-demand hot water system.
- Use cold water for your laundry.
Water Saving Tips
- Turn off the faucet when shaving and brushing your teeth.
- Cover your flowerbeds with mulch to reduce evaporation of moisture in your garden.
- Never water your lawn in the heat of the day. Turn your sprinkler system on in the early AM to minimize evaporation.
Window Tips for an Energy Efficient Home
- Replace your 20 year old windows with new-style energy efficient windows. When shopping for new windows compare the NFRC Ratings to optimize your selection.
- Inspect the caulking around windows and doors and replace as needed.