In case you’ve realized that your home is not as energy-efficient as you thought and you’re spending way too much money on bills, it’s time to make some changes. Fortunately, there are various ways how you can update your home and change your habits in order to save some money and the environment. Here is what you should have in mind.
1. Use LEDs instead of incandescent bulbs
For starters, you should get rid of incandescent bulbs around the house. You want to use LEDs instead as they can save you money in the long run, even though they can be more expensive upfront. As the old-style incandescent bulbs cannot be recycled, you want to throw them away in the trash once they blow. Wrap them in newspapers or some other packaging materials before you put them in the bin, for safety.
2. Buy energy-efficient appliances
Another way of saving on bills is getting energy-efficient home appliances online. From fridges to dishwashers and washing machines, check the energy rating of an appliance before you purchase it so you can ensure that going forward they won’t be contributing to the bills as they once did.
3. Unplug appliances that you’re not using
If you’ve recently purchased some appliances without checking their energy efficiency, there are still ways to cut down on your power use. Did you know that various devices around your home use electricity even when you’re not actually using them?
With that in mind, you want to unplug those appliances you don’t need at the moment. From the washing machine and the toaster all the way to your phone charger, you want to unplug everything you’re not using. It can be bothersome at first but you’ll quickly get into the habit of doing it and it will save you money.
4. Maintain the appliances on a regular basis
Something else that’s important that you do regularly is clean your appliances. You can check the manual of each device to see how it should be maintained and how often it should be serviced. That way, you’re ensuring all your appliances are working optimally and not using more power than is necessary.
5. Run certain appliances in the evening
Depending on where you live, there might be a part of the day when electricity is cheaper. By doing some research, you can find out whether it would pay to run your washing machine or the dishwasher late at night.
6. Lower your thermostat
Adjusting your thermostat can also make a huge difference when trying to make your home more energy-efficient. For example, dropping the temperature by a few degrees will not lead to you freezing as you can simply put on a sweater but you will see a noticeable reduction on your utility bill.
7. Get a smart thermostat
If you leave the heating on even when you’re at work so that you’re welcomed by a warm home, you need to look into getting a smart thermostat. This addition will allow you to program the thermostat so that your home warms up, or cools down, just in time. You can also find one that you’ll be able to control remotely, via an app.
8. Install solar panels
For a bigger project, you can also opt for solar panels. Do plenty of research to see how big of a system you would need to power your home and find the best place to install the panels. In time, you might even be able to sell electricity to the grid.
9. Opt for low-flow water fixtures
In addition to saving on electricity, you should also make an effort to conserve water. For that to happen, look for water-saving fixtures such as low-flow faucets and showerheads as well as low-flush toilets. Certain countries, like Australia, have implemented conservation schemes and certifications that aim to save water and money, it should not be difficult to find quality fixtures that match both your needs and aesthetics.
10. Turn off unnecessary water
Even if you replace your fixtures, you can still change some habits that result in too much water use. For example, remember to turn off the water while brushing your teeth or shaving. Moreover, you can also try collecting the cold water you let run down the drain before you step into the shower. This water can be used for watering your plants.
11. Consider a tankless water heater
While it comes with high upfront costs, a tankless water heater will also help you save money on bills as it heats the water as it goes through the pipes. That means that you will not unnecessarily be heating water and wasting electricity.
12. Seal all cracks
If you’re dealing with drafts in your home, you might also be spending more money on cooling and heating your home. To save money and make sure your AC isn’t running in vain, you want to check if all the windows and doors are properly sealed.
Fortunately, drafts can be fixed easily by applying weather-stripping, re-glazing loose window panes, and filling in any holes. Worst case scenario, you might have to replace the windows; then, make sure you go for some double-glazed models.
13. Insulate your home
Another way to prevent the warm or cool air from escaping your home is by ensuring it is properly insulated. With that in mind, have a professional check your roof and attic insulation and fix it if necessary. This move can save you up to 10% on heating and cooling costs.
14. Add some shade
In case your home heats up excessively during the summer months, you want to invest in some shade solutions. From installing retractable awnings and planting trees to closing the blinds and curtains, there is a wide range of ways how you can prevent the sun rays from entering your home and save money by not having to run the AC.
15. Start your own compost pile
Finally, you want to start a compost pile. You don’t need a lot of space for this and it will help you reduce the amount of waste your household produces. Plus, in time, you can use it as fertilizer for your lawn and garden.
If you think your home is wasting energy and using up too much of your money, it’s high time you changed that. From saving on electricity to conserving water, there is a lot you can do. And perhaps most importantly, your actions will directly affect your environment and contribute towards a cleaner future for all.
- About the Author
Alex Grigoryan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in prestigious blogs such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.