There are a lot of things you can do to save energy every day. Whether you’re looking to conserve energy at home, to help lower your heating bills, or interested in making a big environmental impact, there is a plethora of information available online to get you started.
After reviewing many of the resources available, it’s clear that you can easily get caught up in so much information. To help you sort it out and get you on the fast track to energy savings, we’ve created a list five tips to jump your conservation efforts.
Energy Saving Tip 1
Make sure you turn off all lights and appliances when they aren’t in use. ALWAYS. This is one of the main causes of energy waste and skyrocketing energy bills. Turning off lights and electronic devices both in your home and elsewhere will always help to improve energy conservation.
Energy Saving Tip 2
Turning down the temperature of your home by just one degree can drastically decrease your energy consumption while also helping to lower your home heating bill. You can also consider improving some of your home and window insulation to help you keep the warm air inside during winter and the cool air inside during summer.
Energy Saving Tip 3
If you have the option for choosing lightweight packaging when purchasing products, remember that the less packaging involved typically means there was less energy used to produce it. Making smart decisions is one of the best ways you can help improve energy conservation on a global scale.
Energy Saving Tip 4
Rethinking your travel schedule is another great way to save. Everyone has last minute (and late night) trips to the store, for example, but if you’re able to run 4 errands in one trip instead of spreading them out over multiple trips, you’ll use a lot less gas while saving money.
These energy saving tips are just the tip of the iceberg, but accomplishing even just a few will get you started saving in no time. What do you think are the most important ways to get started saving energy? Leave your ideas in the comments below!
Home energy and conservation expert, resource on propane heating.
Here are 5 things you can do to successfully reduce your home energy consumption and save money in the process courtesy of Washington Energy Services in Seattle, Washington:
1.Seal the leaks around windows and exterior doors. This is easy to do, and will help your home keep the heat in. Caulk, spray foam or use weather stripping and it will have an impact on improving your comfort and reducing utility bills. Don’t want to fuss with this – contact a handyman, or a reputable window, insulation or painting company. Many of them provide this service.
2.Fix your insulation situation. Insulation is typically the #1 way to save energy in your home. According to the Department of Energy (www.ornl.gov) “heating and cooling account for 50 to 70% of the energy used in the average American home. Inadequate insulation and air leakage are leading causes of energy waste in most homes.” And according to EnergyStar, you could “save up to 10% of your total annual energy bill” just by sealing and insulating.
3.Clean and seal heating ducts. Almost 20% of the air that moves through your duct system is lost due to leaks and poorly sealed connections. Over time, ducts can sag or collapse. Vermin and other animals can chew holes in crawl space ductwork. Ducts can also come apart at the seams. When this happens, any air that should be going to the rooms in your home is instead being wasted by ending up in your attic, your walls, or under your house. If duct tape was used on your ductwork originally, it’s best to have it replaced with aluminum or foil tape. Traditional duct tape deteriorates quickly. Metal seams should be cleaned and then sealed with duct mastic, which doesn’t crack. It creates a permanent seal.
4.Let your equipment breathe. Your heating and cooling systems depend on a flow of air to maximize their efficiency. Homeowners can take easy steps to help – change the furnace filter, and check for leaves/debris around an outside heat pump or air conditioner. A clogged air intake outside or dirty indoor furnace filter limits air flow to the equipment and causes it to function inefficiently. It can eventually lead to costly breakdowns and repairs. This is similar to changing the air filter in your car. Electronic filters typically need cleaning at least twice per year and paper filters need replacing. Check your product warranty for your manufacturer’s specific instructions.
5.Open those registers. Many people close floor registers to push heat into certain parts of their house. Since about the late 60’s the products installed in homes have been forced air furnaces. These are designed for a specific amount of air to flow thru the furnace while operating. The ductwork is designed for this amount of air also. When air registers are closed it reduces the airflow and allows heat to buildup in the system. That heat has to go somewhere, and that somewhere is up the flue and out of your house. Closing 1 or 2 registers is fine in rooms that get too hot. Keep as many registers open as possible so your furnace can operate at maximum efficiency. This is the same for heat pumps and central air conditioning. Airflow is key to efficient heating and saving money.
Not sure where to start to make your home energy efficient? Consider a home energy audit. A certified audit uses the latest technology to analyze your house, measuring heat loss, combustion and air leakage. An audit will show you how your home uses and wastes energy. This will help you prioritize what you can do to get the most energy savings
If you live in a region where the intensity of summer heat results in alarming energy bills, you may be one of the many who dreads the end of Spring. However, you can keep your home cool without running an air conditioner day and night. In this article, you’ll learn how to stay comfortable in the summer while saving energy and money. Read on for some very cool cooling tips.
1. Set your thermostat just one degree higher.
Every degree that you raise your thermostat will save you approximately 2-3 percent on your cooling bill. A fan in the room or an open window can make it feel colder and will cost less to run than an air conditioner.
2. Don’t pay to cool an empty house.
If you’re leaving home for a long day or a weekend away, don’t pay to keep an empty house cool. Save money by setting your thermostat high or turning it off completely. Keep your home just cool enough to remove some of the most intense humidity.
3. Close the vents or registers in unused rooms.
Stopping the flow of cooled air to an unused room can save you anywhere from 5-10 percent on your cooling costs.
4. Stop the sun.
Shades and blinds will block out the sun and are extremely effective at keeping a room from heating up like an oven. Like windowless desert abodes, a dark room can stay very cool on a hot day.
5. Use a window fan at night.
Fans cost less to run than air conditioner, so take advantage of the cooler night air and turn off your air conditioner. Instead, open a few windows and run a fan for a nice cross-breeze. You’ll actually be surprised how many mornings you wake up with a comfortable chill.
6. Turn off heat-throwing appliances.
Light fixtures and heat-throwing appliances can cause your home to heat up fast and also throw off your thermostat’s readings. Move hot appliances away from your thermostat and say goodbye to hot halogen lamps. Cut back on baking and other food preparation that involves an over. You might alternatively consider more outback cookouts on the grill to compensate for less use of the oven.
7. Close your electrostatic filters.
If your cooling system utilizes an electronic air filter, washing the filter every month is critical for maximum efficiency. Use cold water and a soft brush, or you can run the filter through a gentle cycle in your dishwasher. Once the filters are clean and dry, you can replace them.
8. Close your basement registers.
Typically, basements are already dark and cool, so there’s no need to waste energy pumping them full of conditioned air. Closing your basement’s vents or registers will make more cool air available to the rest of the house, lessening the load on your air conditioner and saving you money.
9. Clean your air conditioner’s condenser.
The condenser on your air conditioner is the big unit that sits outside your house. To run at maximum efficiency, it needs to be properly cleaned and maintained. Start by shutting off power to the unit. Once the power has been cut, remove the access panels on the front of the unit. Then clean out any accumulated debris such as leaves, garbage or dirt. Use warm, soapy water and a soft brush to wash down the coils and fan. Finally, turn the fan to make sure it’s operating smoothly. When you’re done, replace the access panels.