Whether you are trying to help the environment by reducing energy usage, or just save money on your monthly utility bill, here are some things you can do to make long-term changes to your home's energy usage.
Insulate and Seal Everything: To avoid wasting money on your utility bills, it is important to be sure that your home in insulated and sealed.
The "envelope" of your home (exterior walls, roof, doors, and windows) are your home's first line of defense against the elements. If you can keep heat and cold from entering your home, you will save a tremendous amount of money on heating and cooling. Having cracks or gaps in your home's windows, doors, or attic can let in as much air as an open window! This can make a huge difference when you are trying to heat and cool your home.
Adding extra insulation to the interior ceiling of your attic, making sure the walls are properly insulated, adding weather stripping to your door frames, and installing new energy-efficient windows will prevent you from wasting energy on ineffective heating and cooling. Talk with home improvement experts, like Aladdin's Glass & Screen Products Inc, to see what upgrades you can add to your home.
Use Energy-Efficient Appliances: A large portion of the energy used in your home is used by the major appliances. Energy-efficient appliances can make a huge reduction in the energy usage of your home.
For example, if you purchase one of the most efficient refrigerators on the market, it will use less than half as much energy as a model that is 12 years old or older. Over the lifetime of the appliance, this is a tremendous difference in energy usage!
Energy-efficient appliances may seem expensive initially, as they generally cost more than other appliances. But an energy-efficient model is a great investment that saves you energy and money in the long-run.
Efficient use of heating and cooling: Heating and cooling is the largest use of energy in most homes in the United States, accounting for an average of 48% of the energy usage.
In addition to making sure your heating and cooling systems are energy-efficient and properly insulated, there are other things you can do to reduce the amount of energy spent on heating and cooling. Replace filters and keep your heating and cooling systems properly maintained. Use the sun to warm your house in the winter by opening shutters and blinds. Use the shutters and blinds to keep sun out in the summer. Keep the doors to unoccupied rooms closed and make sure the ducts in those rooms are closed. This will make the areas that you live in more comfortable without waste.
If you are smart and thoughtful about your home's energy use, you can use much less! This is good for your planet and for your wallet.