The recession has forced many Americans to start asking themselves, “How much can I save on my electric bill?” There are many ways to save money on electric bills and increase your energy efficiency. Many factors come into play when you want to maximize your efforts to save electricity and make your home more energy efficient.
Below are eight ways to make your home more energy-efficient during the cold winter months:
Windows: Windows reduce your need for air conditioner air conditioning because the amount of heat entering the house is cut down. Utilizing energy-efficient windows also decreases air leakage from windows. State, federal, and local regulations, like tax incentives, are extremely beneficial for homeowners in all parts of the U.S., especially those who have been previously unsuccessful in keeping their homes comfortable during the heat of summer. It actually costs less nowadays to operate a house that has been transformed to become more energy-efficient than it would cost to operate an older house.
Water Heater: Every person who owns a water heater knows that when the temperature drops, your water heater will start to use more electricity to keep water warm. To conserve on your utility bills in the winter months, try to adjust the temperature settings on your water heater. If you tend to turn the heater up too high when the temperature drops, you could be wasting energy as well as money. Water-heaters account for roughly 20% of all utility bills so taking a few steps to reduce your use will pay off for you in the end.
Insulation: Improving the quality of your insulation is one way to both save on your utility bills and to reduce your carbon footprint. Homeowners should check their insulation to see if they are properly sealed and determine if they need to add any additional layers. Installing new window frames and installing effective seals around window frames and door frames can significantly reduce air leaks. Installing caulk around the edges of window frames and around the edges of door frames will also seal out moisture and help prevent condensation.
Cooling: The best ways to save on energy consumption during the winter months is to conserve energy whenever possible and to reduce the amount of time that you spend inside. In particular, it is imperative that you set the thermostat to the coolest settings whenever possible. When you leave the room, turn on the air conditioner and set it at a cool 15 degrees above room temperature. You can also install a few additional fans and make sure that they work efficiently. If you live in a climate that experiences unusually cold winters, consider installing an ice chiller that will keep your drinks cold while keeping your living space warm.
Energy-Efficient Heating: During the summer months, it can be extremely costly to run your central air conditioning system because the unit takes up a lot of energy. In order to conserve energy, many homeowners have switched to smart thermostats. A smart thermostat is a heating and cooling device that regulate the amount of heat that your home’s systems generate, so you don’t have to constantly adjust the temperature. These devices are often referred to as “smart” because they not only sense the average temperature, but they also track changes in temperature and vary the temperature based on what you tell it. For example, when you leave the room, the computer tells the thermostat to turn down the heat to prevent overheating. With this knowledge, it is possible to heat your home efficiently by simply using a program to regulate the settings on your thermostat.