If you are a household that is serious about budgeting and saving money, maybe for more important things like vacation, a second home, your kids college or even retirement, then you will be delighted to know that these savings can extend to your energy costs as well. In fact, energy efficient homes can save up to 43 percent or more on average, than their non efficient counterparts, saving hundreds of dollars in energy costs each year. If you are serious about saving money, simply incorporate these energy saving tips to help increase your savings while getting your home summer ready.
Make LED/Energy Star Your Light Choice
When replacing your lights, lamps and fixtures, both inside and outside, consider swapping them out for more energy-efficient lighting sources such as CFLs and LED’s etc., to increase energy savings. This way, you’ll not only enjoy energy savings while inside, but you’ll also be able to enjoy energy savings when outside.
Solar, wind and geothermal energy, or renewable energy, which reduces energy consumption and saves money by replacing power plants and fossil fuel expenses, is on the rise. According to Energy Companies Alberta, at least 17,000 megawatts of these energy sources are under construction, doubling electric generating capacity since 2004 and accounting for 2.4 million jobs worldwide. As of today, more than 65 countries have national goals for incorporating the use of renewable energy and have already enacted policies to meet those goals. As a result, both private and multilateral agencies are integrating renewable energy into their mainstream portfolio.
Switch to Energy Efficient Window Treatments and Coverings
Energy efficient window treatments and coverings block out the sun, which helps prevent heat from seeping through your windows. They also trap cool air in, which allows you to set your a/c unit on a higher setting, so you use less energy and increase savings.
Plug Your Home’s Leaks
Drafty windows and doors allow cool air to escape and hot air to enter. Seal, caulk and weather-strip your windows and doors, and install foam gaskets behind outlet covers, to save up to 5% or more on cooling costs.
Keep Your A/C System Running Efficiently
Regular maintenance of your cooling system helps preserve your system as well as its parts. Also, avoid putting heat generating appliances such as lamps and televisions etc., near the thermostat, which can cause your system to run longer. You should also avoid placing furniture and other objects in front of your system’s vacuum registers. Vacuum registers remove dust build up. Blocking them blocks airflow, which hinders their function.
Change A/C Filters Regularly
Clogged or dirty filters restrict airflow, which can cause your unit to work harder or run longer to cool your home and increases energy use. For maximum benefit, it is recommended that you replace your unit’s filter monthly.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
A programmable thermostat makes it easier to adjust your home’s temperatures while you are away. For example, set your thermostat to warmer temperatures while you are away, and adjust it to a cooler temperature when you are home.
Incorporate Ceiling Fans
Ceiling fans effectively circulate air throughout the room. If you use air condition in your home, a ceiling fan will allow you to increase the setting on your unit with no reduction in comfort, and in some cases, eliminate the need for a/c altogether.
Don’t Heat Your Home with Lighting and Appliances
On hot days, avoid using heat generating appliances and lighting, which can increase your need for energy consumption. For example, approximately 15 percent of electricity generated by incandescent lighting actually results in light, while the rest simply turns into heat. So when possible, use natural light, but avoid direct sunlight, or replace high energy lighting with energy efficient lighting, which runs cooler. You could also consider minimizing other heat generating activities like using the oven, running the dryer and burning open flames etc., to help keep your home cooler.
Choose Energy Star Products
When replacing select features in your home, replace them with Energy Star products to realize increased energy savings. For example, an Energy Star model refrigerator with a bottom or top freezer design can save you an additional 2 to 3 percent on your bill. If your air conditioner needs replacing, an Energy Star model can save you up to 10 percent, and so on.