7 Easy Energy-Saving Tips That Require Minimal Investment for HomeownersPublished on: December 12, 2013
It’s remarkable how much energy you can save by following through on easy and inexpensive energy-saving tips for your home. These seven tips require little investment and are easy ways to save energy and money:
- Seal the air leaks. Your home may be losing conditioned air to the outdoors where it has air leaks. A professional energy audit will show you exactly where they are, and you can also do it yourself. All you’ll need is a stick of incense to locate the cracks. Close all the exterior doors and windows, turn on the kitchen and bathroom fans, and focus on the exterior walls inside. Light the incense and walk through each room in your home that shares a wall with the outside. Wherever you see the smoke move, you probably have an air leak. Note its location on paper and when finished, seal the smaller cracks with exterior caulk. If you find larger gaps, use expanding foam. Use weatherstripping on movable joints in doors and windows.
- Check the air filter for the air handler monthly when your heating or cooling system is running routinely and change it when it’s dirty. A dirty filter drives up energy costs and wears your system out faster.
- Turn down the thermostat at night and when you leave your home to cut your energy costs. A programmable thermostat will do the job for you and is especially convenient if you’re away on a routine basis.
- One of the most useful energy-saving tips is to turn down your water heater to 120 degrees F. Not only does it save energy, it prolongs your water heater’s life. Fewer sediments form at the bottom of the tank, which can cut its useful life.
- Wash your laundry in cold water. With modern detergents, the water temperature doesn’t make a huge difference.
- Unplug those chargers for portable electronics. Most of them continue to draw electricity when left plugged in. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that 75 percent of the power they use happens when they’re not charging anything when left plugged in.
- Change the power settings for your computer and its monitor to go to sleep after 15 to 30 minutes of sitting idle.
For more energy-saving tips, please contact us to find an HVAC contractor near your Southeast U.S. home.
Written by Robert Koch