10 Ways to Cut Your Energy Costs at Home

As energy rates continue to rise, you may be on the lookout for tips to reduce your usage and save money. Although big investments such as replacing the windows or installing high-efficiency HVAC systems absolutely make your home more energy efficient, you can lower energy costs today with very little up-front investment. Here’s what to do.

1. Change Your HVAC Air Filter

Check the filter monthly and change it when it looks dirty, or every three months, whichever happens first. The cost of a new filter can pay for itself by encouraging efficiency, guaranteeing proper airflow, and preventing the HVAC equipment from overheating. Your home will also feel more comfortable and have healthier indoor air with a new filter in place.

2. Set Your Thermostat for Energy Savings

Keep the temperature about 70 degrees or lower through the winter and adjust it to 77 degrees or higher for the summer. Then, dress for the season to help you stay comfortable.

3. Install a Programmable Thermostat

If you still have an old manual thermostat, upgrade to a programmable model. This kind of thermostat pays for itself quickly via energy savings by letting you program setback periods while you’re away or asleep. Automatic temperature recovery means you save money without ever feeling uncomfortable. Try to find a smart Wi-Fi thermostat you can set up remotely for additional opportunities to save.

4. Implement Yearly HVAC Maintenance

Preventative maintenance offers a great return on investment. First, it pays you back by slashing your energy bills. After all, a well-maintained HVAC system runs better than a neglected one. You also reduce the risk of equipment failures and the required repair costs. Additionally, the system is more likely to live a few years more when you take good care of it today.

5. Locate and Fix Air Leaks

Air leaks can develop wherever a couple of building materials are connected. Locate and seal these leaks to keep your home comfortable and reduce the strain on your HVAC system. Here are a couple of tips:

  • Try to replace old weatherstripping to help windows and doors shut more tightly. 
  • Re-caulk stationary cracks around windows and doors to seal out air leaks.
  • Put in expanding spray foam near wiring, plumbing, ventilation, and other penetrations in the walls, ceilings and floors. 
  • Shut the fireplace damper when a fire isn’t burning.

6. Use Solar Heat Gain to Your Advantage

During the summer, you should try to reduce solar heat gain. Closing reflective curtains over the windows through the afternoon is an easy way to do this. If your budget permits, you can also plant trees on the south and west sides of your property. By selecting deciduous trees, you can enjoy plenty of shade in the summer while still enabling the sun to heat your home for free throughout the winter.

7. Use Water Effectively

Conserve this limited resource and lower your water bills with these tips:

  • Take shorter showers rather than longer baths.
  • Put in low-flow showerheads and aerated faucets.
  • Turn off the water when you are shaving and brushing your teeth.
  • Fix drippy faucets, running toilets, and leaky pipes right away.

8. Turn Things Off

Plug computers, printers, TVs, Blu-ray players, game consoles and other electronics into power strips. This way, you can shut them off with the flip of a switch when you are not using them. At the same time, unplug cell phone chargers and other adapters when you don’t need them to minimize small amounts of “phantom” energy use.

9. Upgrade Your Light Bulbs

Do you still have old incandescent bulbs around the house? Swap them out with LEDs to save up to 70 percent on your lighting bills. Bulb replacement costs also decrease as LEDs last about 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs.

10. Operate Appliances Efficiently

Appliances are the electricity hogs of the home. Lower costs with these tips:

  • Close windows and doors when running the furnace or air conditioner.
  • Adjust the water heater temperature to 120 degrees and wrap it in an insulating blanket.
  • Only operate the dishwasher and washing machine with full loads.
  • Switch off the heated-dry function on your dishwasher.
  • Line-dry clothes when possible.
  • Reheat food in the microwave as opposed to the oven or stove, especially on summer afternoons.
  • If your local utility provider charges more for electricity during “peak times,” strive to use energy-heavy appliances during low-peak periods.
  • Get Help Cutting Home Energy Costs

    Lots of cost-cutting measures relate to your home heating, cooling and plumbing systems. If you need help implementing these tips, reach out to Comfortech Service Experts . We provide affordable maintenance and repair work, along with cost-effective installation and replacement services. Plus, with financing options available, even big upgrades will suit your budget. For more details about our services or to request an estimate, please contact your local Comfortech Service Experts office today.

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