The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
Make Your Home More Energy Efficient
Energy wastage is a dire problem in the US according to 99SmartHomes infographic. This is an even greater problem because it ends up costing us money in the form of utility bills. So conversving energy is an important step. One of the first steps down this path of conservation is the realization that your children need to have a world that is also clean and free of pollution. The next step is the realization is that right now our planet is also in dire need of keeping our air and water clean for those of us who are living and breathing right now.
The great news is that there are now many companies offering eco-friendly services and products that greatly reduce the amount of energy being consumed. There are also many common sense approaches to basic living that will also reduce your carbon footprint and make your presence on this planet one that is cleaner for you and all of those around you.
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1. Incandescent Bulbs Should be Replaced With LEDs.
There are several reasons why you should be using LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) instead of old-fashioned incandescent bulbs. The main reason is because LEDs are up to 90 percent more energy efficient. In addition, LEDs will last up to 60,000 hours compared to the 1,500 hour life of the average incandescent bulb. The fact that LEDs do not need to be replaced near as often means that your maintenance costs are reduced as well as your energy expenses.
Another important consideration is the safety of LEDs. These lights are cool to the touch unlike incandescent bulbs. This means that the chances of fires and other heat related accidents are greatly reduced, and this allows for energy savings on multiple levels.
2. Use Programmable Thermostats.
By using these devices, you can control when lower and higher amounts of energy are used. Obviously, it would make sense to not correct the temperature as much when you are going to be at work or when you are going on a vacation. By programming best wifi thermostat intelligently, it is possible for you to save a substantial amount of money throughout the year. Many individuals save almost $200 annually by correctly manipulating their home’s temperature using these kinds of thermostats.
It should also be noted that if your home has multiple regions that require slightly different temperature adjustments, then you should consider using multiple thermometers, so you can take full advantage of the differences of each section of the house. When each area of the home is kept at the optimum temperature by using multiple thermostats, it is possible to save an even greater amount money.
3. Use Charging Stations that Turn Themselves Off.
If you have one or more battery charging stations in your home, then be sure that they are the kind that will shut down when the device they are powering has a full charge. Charging stations are responsible for using almost ten percent of a home’s power, and that’s quite a drain on both energy and finances. That’s why it is important to make sure that you are using the correct kind of energy efficient charging stations, so you can reap the benefits of not consuming quite so much power.
4. Air Filters Should be Changed on Time.
Changing your air filters on a regular basis is another great way to reduce your energy expenses. This is especially true if you spend over $100 on cooling and heating your home. By getting into the habit of doing this, it is possible for you to save almost $50 a year. This amount of savings is enough to pay for the extra filters you will use.
You should also realize that by changing your air filters regularly, you also reduce the amount of dirty air within your house. You also reduce the amount of filth that accumulates on the objects inside your home. By having cleaner air that is filtered properly, you also lower your maintenance costs as well as your utility expenses.
5. Use Dual-Flush Toilets.
These devices utilize a two level system that saves you water. When you only need to remove liquid waste, you have the option for a partial flush, and when you need to remove solid waste, then you can perform a complete flush. The typical family of four using this type of technology can expect to have annual savings of about $100 dollars or so.
If you have a regular toilet then you can use this kit to convert it to a dual flush toilet.
6. Use a Shower Head With a Drip Feature.
Many shower heads come with a feature that allows them to drip water while you are busy lathering up. However, you can easily replicate this effect by turning the water off instead. By getting in the habit of doing this, it is possible for you to save approximately $40 every year. You can also lower your expenses by not taking lengthy showers.
7. Make Use of Light Dimmers.
Only use as much light as you need, so you do not use quite as much power. This is possible when you use light dimmers throughout your home. For every $100 that you spend powering light bulbs, you could potentially save $15. It is also important to realize that light dimmers will also extend the life of your bulbs so that your maintenance costs may also be reduced as well.
8. Use the Auto Shut Off Feature on the Computers in Your Home.
By using this feature, it is possible for you to save about $30 per year. This also helps increase the amount of time that your computers will function properly and will also extend the lives of your monitors as well. In addition, if you know for certain that you are about to leave your home and will not need your computer for a while, then manually turn your computer off and disconnect it from the power outlet. This practice will allow you to save even more money.
9. Use Cellular and Honeycomb Shades.
By using smart blind technology, it is possible for you to lower the amount of heat loss in your home by up to 86 percent. In addition, smart blinds also allow you to have 80 percent less heat gain during the summer months. The savings with these devices can be as high as 15 percent.
10. Use Properly Mounted Ceiling Fans.
By employing ceiling fans in the correct manner, it is possible for you lower the amount of energy used by your HVAC system. This practice makes it possible for you to save an additional amount of ten percent or so on your utility bills.
During the cooler months, run your ceiling fans in a clockwise position. This pushes the warm air up into the upper central part of the room and the down around the edges into the lower portion of the rooms of your home. By mixing up the air in this fashion, the burden on your HVAC system is reduced. Likewise, in the summer months, you should run your fans in a counterclockwise direction that pushes the air downward, so you can feel a breeze on your skin.
You should also remember to turn your ceiling fans off when you leave your home so that you can save even more money.
11. Make Proper Usage of Power Strips.
These handy little devices are convenient in many different ways. One of the main things they do is allow you to shut off an entire grouping of electrical devices with just the flip of a single switch. This not only turns all of the devices off, but it also completely cuts off power from the devices that are connected to it. This has the effect of unplugging all of the devices that are plugged into the strip. By doing this you could be looking at savings of about $30 per year.
In addition, power strips also protect the items plugged into them from electrical surges and other unforeseen events.
12. Manually Run Your Irrigation Systems.
You could save anywhere from $10 to $35 dollars every month if you stop running your outdoor sprinklers on a set schedule. Instead, you would just run your system manually. By doing this, you can take advantage of not running your sprinklers when there is plenty of rain. In addition, you can gradually turn up the amount of water sent to your lawn during the summer months, so you don’t use as much water in the spring.
13. Use Outdoor Lights With Motion Sensors.
These types of lights automatically turn on when motion in a certain area is detected, and this can greatly enhance the security of your property. You can also save about $10 per month with an outdoor lighting system that uses this sort of technology when you compare it to using a group of outdoor lights that always remain on.
14. Use Outdoor Lights That Are Solar Powered.
These lights recharge themselves with solar power. They are perfect for lighting areas such as flower beds and gardens. An average home can save about $30 a year with these types of lights.
15. Use Dusk to Dawn LED Bulbs.
You never have to worry about turning these lights on or off because they do this automatically. Using this sort of sensible lighting technology could save you as much as $10 a month.