Easy To Implement Tips on How to be More Energy Efficient in The Home
Knowing how to be more energy efficient means learning how to reduce energy consumption.
This is not as hard as it sounds as many of the things we do every day add to our energy use.
A few minor changes in your lifestyle can help be more energy efficient in your home without giving up anything.
One common sense step is to replace incandescent light bulbs with new spiral designed energy efficient light bulbs. An advantage is the newer bulbs last a very long time so the additional cost is not a major factor in the long run.
Some consumers complain the light from the new bulb style is not as bright as they are accustomed to. To make a more gradual change you can mix incandescent bulbs with energy efficient bulbs in a ceiling light.
Many ceiling light fixtures use two or three light bulbs. By using one incandescent bulb and two of the new light bulbs you can save on energy use without sacrificing brightness.
When you see how often you must replace the incandescent lights while the new bulbs just keep working, chances are you will only use energy efficient lights.
Walking at Night
Walking through your home at night with the lights off may surprise you. You will likely see tiny lights glowing in every room. Blue, green and red lights often are shining and clocks are displayed even on appliances that are turned off.
If there is a light, energy is being used. Of course, you don't want to constantly have to plug in your microwave oven to use it but there are some steps you can take to reduce energy consumption.
If you have a home theater system, buy a circuit protecting plug strip and plug all of the elements - TV, DVD, etc – into that plug strip. When not using your entertainment system, simply turn off the switch on the circuit interrupter and your equipment will not keep pulling power.
Taken alone, a piece of entertainment equipment, night light or outdoor lighting does not use much electrical power.
However, the way we live today includes using many such pieces of equipment and when combined they can be a significant source of power use.
One way to be more energy efficient in the home is to reduce electricity used by equipment that is not needed at the moment.
Buy only EnergyStar rated appliances. When you need to replace a refrigerator, washer or dryer you are buying an appliance that uses a significant amount of electricity.
Any item that either heats or cools requires high energy use. EnergyStar appliances are rated to alert consumers to the amount of power that appliances uses. Appliances must have certain qualities to qualify for the rating.
There is some debate among experts as to how much more energy efficient EnergyStar is for the home. The ratings have improved and manufacturers are constantly developing new ways of producing appliances that will earn the EnergyStar rating.
When the goal is how to be more energy efficient in the home the best results come from addressing every energy issue whether large or small. It is the combined efforts that yield great results in energy savings.
Seal and Insulate
Nothing is more energy efficient in the home than paying attention to seals and insulation. Add new caulking around windows and doors and a thicker layer of insulation on the floor of the attic. Make certain the bottoms of exterior doors have a proper threshold and air is not leaking in.
Put your hand over switches and plugs located on outside walls in the home on a winter day and if you feel cold air tuck some pieces of insulation around the electrical box.
Consider replacing single pane windows with insulated double paned windows. This can done for about $2500 for an average sized home and the energy savings can be enormous even for an older home.
Rebates and Incentives
Check government websites for tax incentives and cash rebates offered for upgrading heating and cooling systems and for other energy efficient additions to your home.
These incentives are often good for a full year and can cut the price of insulating or other expenses almost in half.
Incentives can be available for home improvement but also may be found for new EnergyStar appliances purchases.
Saving energy is a big business today so take advantage of any special deals and incentives offered.
If you are not sure how to be more energy efficient you can ask your utility company for an energy audit.
There will be a chare for the service but an expert will come to your home and point out areas where improvement is needed. This will help you prioritize changes you need to make!
If you are interested, you can also explore our guides on alternative energy which could help you replace your current energy supplier completely!