Around 20 million American households can’t afford their energy bills, which means we must find ways to reduce our consumption.
Reducing your energy bills has an array of benefits, from helping you save a fortune to minimizing your carbon footprint. But with so much information online, it’s difficult knowing which areas of your home to target for fast results. Maybe that’s why you’re here; you want to slash energy costs but aren’t sure where to start.
Sounds like you? Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 12 ways to reduce energy bills in your home.
1. Wash Full Dishwasher and Washing Machine Loads
An effective way of reducing energy bills is to only wash full loads.
For instance, only wash your dishes with the machine when you have a large number of dirty plates and activate its eco function to reduce the temperature. If you’re worried about energy consumption, use a washing bowl to clean smaller piles of plates or cutlery.
The same goes for your washing machine. You should wash your clothes in cooler water and save it for once a week to slash bills. And instead of using a tumble dryer, dry your threads on a rack inside or outside when it’s warm.
You should also go the extra mile by conserving water. For instance, avoid taking a daily bath and swap them for showers. Another useful tip is reducing your shower by one minute so that you save on your energy and electricity bill. Note, it’s also wise to buy a water-efficient shower head to prevent any costly leaks.
2. Install a Smart Thermostat
Another way to slash energy costs is to install a smart thermostat.
These nifty gadgets make your home more efficient by warming or cooling the rooms you’re using. It also means you can alter the temperature via a smartphone app, which is great when you’re out and about. Once you’ve set it up, turn down the thermostat by one degree and you’ll save a fortune over a year.
You must also be mindful of where your thermostat is positioned. For instance, if the thermostat is exposed to a draft or in direct sunlight, it could automatically turn on the system when it isn’t necessary.
If you only need to heat one room, invest in an electric space heater. These are popular because there isn’t any heat loss and they quickly keep you warm. But make sure you turn off the space heater when you’re not around to prevent any accidents.
3. Turn Off Any Standby Appliances
Homeowners set on conserving energy should turn off standby appliances as these consume a huge amount of electricity. Note, most appliances can be turned off without upsetting their programming, whether it’s your TV or game console. If you won’t remember to do this, invest in a smart plug so you can turn off all appliances at once.
4. Invest in Double Pane Windows
An underrated way of saving energy is investing in energy efficient home windows. These insulate your home from the cold so you needn’t crank up the heating in winter.
While you do this, it’s important to seal windows or doors because they’re a major cause of heat loss. If you’re not sure where you stand, hold a lit candle near the gap and see whether it flickers. When you notice there is a draft, seal the gap with caulk or tape for the best results.
Further, you can save energy by letting the sun flood your home during the day. Many homeowners forget that it’s a great source of free heat, especially in winter. But make sure that you close windows or blinds at night to prevent heat loss.
5. Insulate Your Home
You can also slash heating bills by insulating your home. Although it initially seems expensive, effective insulation will keep your property cooler or warmer over time. It’s important to focus on insulating your loft or basement as these are areas that will most likely lose heat.
6. Regularly Service Your HVAC System
Homeowners should get in the habit of maintaining their HVAC system once a year at the minimum. For instance, you should change air filters regularly because if they’re clogged, the system will work over time, which reduces its lifespan. It’s also important to hire an HVAC technician who can inspect the system and check that every component is working well.
Aside from maintaining your HVAC system, reach out to your local utility provider for an energy audit. This is a fantastic way of knowing how energy-efficient your home is and whether there are other measures you can take. For instance, a technician can check for leaks and if you need to improve your home’s insulation.
7. Swap Out Your Light Bulbs
You may not realize that your choice of light bulbs has a huge impact on your energy bill. A good rule of thumb is to use LED light bulbs because they’re more energy-efficient and last far longer.
Once you’ve changed these, install a dimmer as it reduces wattage and output. You can also find one that is controlled via an app, so you have more ways to adjust your lights. And if you haven’t already, make sure you turn off lights whenever you leave a room for extra savings.
8. Stay Warm With Clothes and Blankets
Anyone concerned about their sky-high heating bills should layer up with clothes and blankets. Invest in thermal socks and sweaters when the temperature drops, so you stay toasty around your house. If you’re worried about keeping your pooch warm, treat them to a doggie sweater, especially if you’re not putting the heater on.
9. Cook With Smaller Appliances
Ovens are notorious for using a staggering amount of power, so only reserve this for larger meals. A good rule of thumb is to use smaller appliances like an air fryer to whip up smaller dishes as it consumes fewer watts. But if you must use an oven, avoid opening the door while cooking as it uses more electricity to return to the original temperature.
Further, when you’re cooking on the hob, put a lid over the pans and turn off the heat for several minutes before serving. Note, this will continue to cook on the trapped heat and is a great trick for saving energy. And if you haven’t already, always match the size of the cooking ring to the pot to avoid heat loss.
You should also make sure that the hob is pristine. If it’s covered in crumbs or grease, it will absorb the heat, so that the stove becomes less efficient. Because of this, simply wipe down the hob after every use and you won’t have this problem.
10. Plant Trees Strategically
Although it sounds surprising, you can reduce your energy bills all year round by planting trees in your yard. During the hotter months, plant trees near your home as the shade will prevent your property from getting too hot. On the flip side, these trees will offer windbreak, which will slow harsh winter winds that will cool your walls.
You should also consider planting trees or shrubs near your A/C unit because it will reduce the amount of energy needed to cool your home.
11. Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances
Go around your home and check that your appliances are energy-efficient. Look out for a washing machine or refrigerator with a high energy ranking as it will consume less over time. Note, focus on models that have been Energy Star-certified as it shows they’re the real deal.
Further, when you use your appliances will impact your energy bill. As a general rule, the price of electricity is cheapest before 8 AM so, if you don’t have neighbors, put on the washing machine then instead.
12. Install Ceiling Fans
Homeowners who live in hotter regions should invest in ceiling fans, rather than a thermostat. This is because fans make the room feel far cooler while using a fraction of what an AC unit uses. A bonus is that ceiling fans can also make your home warmer in the winter.
To do this, hit the fan’s reverse switch so that they turn clockwise. This produces an updraft and pushes down the warm air until it circulates the room.
Slash Your Energy Bills Today
Hopefully, you’ll now reduce energy bills with these tips.
There are many effective ways of reducing your energy consumption, such as only washing full loads and insulating your property. Homeowners should also invest in energy-efficient appliances and replace old light fixtures with LED ones. Good luck!
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