Owning a home can be costly, but nothing drains your wallet like unnecessary energy costs. In many cases, homeowners don’t realize the amount of money that’s being wasted by overlooking some common cost-cutting strategies.
There are many ways you can save on your home’s energy costs without investing a significant amount of time. Putting these steps in place gives you the highest return in owning your home, saves valuable resources, and eliminates unnecessary spending.
The Basics of Energy Saving
Most people are already taking action in saving on energy costs. Common strategies include keeping lights off when not in use and lowering the thermostat when leaving the house. However, there are other ways to save money that are just as simple.
The first step is to find the biggest sources of the energy costs. In most cases, this will be your home’s heating and air conditioning system. It requires the most energy over time.
Also, appliances and electricity are other sources of energy spending that you can address with the following simple steps.
1. Efficient Appliance Use
Appliances such as dishwashers and laundry machines should be used economically. The best way to do this is to use them only when they’re fully loaded. Cleaning a partial load requires more frequent use, which is a waste of water and electricity.
Use hot water settings only when necessary, as this requires additional energy for heating. The lint filters in dryers also affect how much energy is used. So be sure to clean them out periodically to avoid longer drying cycles.
If your home has radiators or heaters, keep them free from obstruction to get the most heat with minimal energy wasted. Vents in the house should also be cleaned to ensure that they’re operating properly.
2. Save on Electricity
One of the most overlooked causes of energy waste is electricity. Although turning off lights when they aren’t needed goes a long way in saving energy costs, there are other ways that electricity can be wasted.
Any chargers that are plugged in, but not being used will consume energy. With chargers for computers and phones being so common, this is one of the biggest ways in which people waste energy.
Ventilation fans in bathrooms are another source of electrical costs. Be sure to turn them off when you no longer need them after using the bathroom or shower. If you’re heating your home, these ventilation fans can draw out the air, making it harder to keep your house warm.
There are likely tiny cracks and openings around your home that may add to your energy costs. These usually occur around doors, pipes, and windows. If they aren’t properly sealed, they can cause warm air to escape from your home, so make sure that you have done energy efficient windows installation, also take care of pipes, doors etc.
Using a sealant, such as caulk, will help you reduce your heating bills by preventing unwanted air leaks and drafts. For pipes and electrical wiring, you can use foam sealants to secure smaller areas.
These are simple steps you can take to save on home energy costs all year round. Yet, many homeowners overlook them and spend far more than they need to. Implementing them on a regular basis will save you money and increase the comfort and quality of your home.
Mark Clair is a 46 year old interior designer, decorator and planner. He is a prolific writer and enjoys putting his thoughts into words on pretty much anything around that evokes an interest in him. Happily married and the father of a new born girl, Mark is now exploring the many little joys and challenges of parenthood. For more information, follow him on twitter.