By maintaining an energy efficient home, you can reduce your energy bills while making a positive environmental impact. In a typical home, approximately 60% of energy costs are from heating and cooling, and 20% from hot water. Take a look at some tips for making your home more energy efficient.
- Keep all exterior doors and windows tightly shut. Try to avoid a lot of traffic going in and out of the home.
- During the cold winter months, keep draperies and shades open during the day to let in the warmth of the sun.
- Lower the heat, even by just 1 degree. This can help save as much as 3% of the energy your furnace is using.
- Keep the cold out and heat in by simple do-it-yourself techniques like caulking around outside door frames and other ideas from your local hardware store.
- Consider upgrading your insulation in basements and attics if this fits into your budget.
- Assure peak performance of your furnace by repairing, maintaining or replacing it.
- Clean or change your furnace filters on a regular basis as outlined in your furnace owner manual.
- Keep the doors shut when the air conditioner is on to keep the cool air in.
- Be comfortable but don't turn the thermostat too low. There are savings in every degree.
- Avoid constant use of heat producing appliances during hot summer days. Use the barbeque instead of the oven.
- For central air, close vents in rooms that are not frequently used.
- Switch to washing laundry in cold water, where appropriate
- Adjust the water level to the correct load size.
- Take quick showers. Baths use considerably more water.
- Run your dishwasher and do laundry during off peak hours. Check your local hydro or electricity provider for more details.
Appliances and Electrical Equipment:
- Let food cool down before placing it in the fridge or freezer. This prevents extra energy from being used to cool down hot food.
- Avoid placing freezers/fridges near heat sources. They will need to work harder if this is done.
- Don't overuse the oven by preheating well before you will be ready to insert food.
- Wait until the dishwasher is loaded to its full capacity before starting a cycle.
- Unplug electrical equipment that is not being used. According to the government's Energy Star program, 40% of the electricity that home electronics use is consumed while the products are not in use.
Using these suggestions will make your home more energy efficient and save you money.