Sometimes, a handful of small changes add up to a much bigger change. With the flick of a switch or a simple update, you can conserve energy and save money in meaningful ways that will add up! We have 25 ideas, large and small, that can help make a difference.
- When you replace appliances, search for EnergyStar appliances. They meet and exceed federal standards, often by a significant amount.
- Use smaller appliances when possible. A microwave, slow cooker, or crock pot will always use less energy than a stove or oven.
- If you need to use your oven or stove, try to double up. Instead of cooking one casserole, make two or three.
- Keep your fridge and freezer full, but not too full. They will run more efficiently than if they are empty or overpacked.
- Vacuum your refrigerator coils at least twice a year. This will keep the compressor free of dust and debris, helping the compressor run smoothly.
- Install a low-flow showerhead, ASAP. It won’t be noticeable when you shower, but it can save you hundreds on your water bill.
- Take showers, not baths. One bath can take as much water as three or four showers, so the savings will add up quickly.
- Fix the drips. Leaky faucets and running toilets waste immense amounts of water, and can pose a potential nightmare if they create a water claim.
- Set your water heater to 120 degrees. This will keep your family safe from scalding, and save money.
- If you have older toilets, think about replacing them with low-flow options. A low flow toilet uses about twenty percent of what an older model uses. This can save a family thousands of gallons of water a year.
- Change your furnace filters monthly.
- Have your furnace inspected yearly, both to check for safety and to make sure it is running efficiently.
- Keep your heat around 65 degrees at night, and 68 during the day. Big swings in temperature are actually inefficient, so this seems to be a comfortable range.
- Look at investing in a programmable thermostat, which can make your temperatures more accurate.
- Keep air vents clear and clean, making sure the airflow is not obstructed by furnishings or window coverings.
- Set your thermostat fan to “auto” so that it doesn’t run nonstop.
- Keep your thermostat at 78-80 degrees when away from the home, so that you conserve energy without creating a home that feels like an oven.
- Use fans to your advantage. Fans should run counter-clockwise in the summer, and clockwise in the winter.
- If you don’t have an AC, consider a whole house attic fan. They cost pennies a day in energy, but can quickly lower the temperature in your home by several degrees.
- Be smart about windows- close curtains in locations where sun comes in, and open windows when the air is cooler, in the evening.
Throughout the home
- Keep switching those light bulbs to CFL bulbs which last for years.
- Unplug small items when not in use, and turn off lights in rooms that are not needed.
- Use power strips for your electronics, so that you can simply flick a switch and turn several things off at once.
- Use caulk and weatherstripping to keep heat in and get rid of drafts in your home.
- Research insulation. Where you use it and the type that you use can save substantial costs and energy, making your home significantly more efficient.
These are just a few ideas to get you started in saving energy at home. Whether you implement one or all 25 of these tips, reap the benefits with savings and a more comfortable living space!