How To Make Your Home More Energy Efficient
A house requires a lot of electricity to keep it comfortable and functioning for you and your family. The monthly electricity bill is proof of that. You can reduce bills and your carbon footprint by making your home run more efficiently. If you’re not quite ready to upend your life and live off the grid, but you want to focus on ways to conserve costs and energy consumption, then here are some easy ways to do it.
Support Your Heater and Air Conditioner
Most people don’t think of multiple ways to heat or cool their house. They set the thermostat at the desired temperature and forget about it. But, just as financial advisors are proponents of multiple income streams, homeowners should think about multiple heating and cooling sources. Solar panels are currently the best example of this. Electricity collected from solar panels offsets energy costs. Solar panels can also offset your taxes through investment tax credits, or solar ITC New Jersey.
Just because you have an air conditioner doesn’t mean that you can’t use fans. Household fans circulate cool air, allowing your air conditioner to work less. For the winter, use secondary heat sources like a fireplace or pellet stove. These tricks will not replace your HVAC system, but they will give it a well-deserved break. Your wallet will get a break too.
Work smarter, not harder. It may be surprising to learn that it’s more efficient to use the dishwasher than to wash dishes by hand. You also save more energy by doing one large load of laundry compared to two small ones. Why put yourself through the extra work? Instead of stressing out about keeping the sink and laundry baskets empty, let those chores go until you have a full load.
When you are cooking, opt for the convection oven setting. Convection cooking uses 20% less energy than a conventional oven and it saves time. Better yet, use the microwave when you can. Microwaves use 80% less energy than a conventional oven.
Daylighting is a fancy term for opening up drapes or blinds instead of turning on lights. This is something parents have been yelling at kids about for decades. Although there is a caveat. If you have old windows with a low NFRC rating, then the money you’re saving on electricity will be used by the HVAC system.
Skylights are a perfect way to introduce natural light into a dark space. Light shelves can be used to propel light further into a room. They are installed at the top of windows to bounce light off the ceiling. Large mirrors installed opposite windows will also do the trick.