Are your home energy bills higher than you’d like or can afford? With today’s high energy prices, it’s never been more important to reduce electricity, gas and water usage in order to control your cost of living expenses.
Thankfully, we’ve created a list of low to no-cost solutions to help you reduce your energy consumption.
1. Change Your Light bulbs and Use More Natural Light
When it comes to saving on your electricity bills, it’s best to keep your lights off during the day and open your curtains or install light-colored curtains that allow sunlight to pass through the material. At night and early in the morning, when you do want to turn on your lights, you don’t want those lights to cost you an exceptional amount of money. Even if you’ve previously switched from standard light bulbs to CFL bulbs, you may want to consider installing LED light bulbs. This is because LED light bulbs are more energy-efficient than CFL bulbs, and they are safer. CFL bulbs contain mercury, which can be harmful and require special disposal procedures. LED light bulbs, on the other hand, require no such precautions, and they are environmentally friendly.
2. Set Your HVAC Thermostats and Consider Installing a SMART Thermostat
One of the best things you can do to lower your energy consumption and carbon footprint it to take advantage of the features of your programmable thermostat, by programming certain temperatures for when you are away and when you are at home. However, since most families still leave their programmable thermostats set at one temperature, it may be beneficial to install a SMART thermostat. SMART thermostats learn your family’s routine and automatically set the indoor temperatures accordingly. Many also contain phone apps and are WiFi enabled so that you can change your home’s thermostat setting while you are away in order to save even more money on your home heating and cooling bills.
3. Buy and Install Low-Flow Showerheads and Faucets
To reduce your home’s water consumption and water heating costs, consider installing low-flow showerheads and faucets. Showerheads can easily be changed as a DIY project, and if you aren’t comfortable removing your faucets and replacing them with new low-flow faucets, you can buy aerators that will reduce the flow of water per minute without sacrificing water pressure. If you have a little more of a budget, you can hire a professional plumber to change your existing toilet to versions that use less water per flush.
4. Never Wash Partial Loads
It’s important to never wash partial loads of anything, including dishes and clothing. Washing machines use an average of 40 gallons of water per load, and they will use those 40 gallons of water regardless of whether you’re washing two towels or ten towels. Dishwashers typically use between four and six gallons of water per load, and your dishwasher uses that much water, whether you’re washing two pans or a full load of plates, cups, bowls and silverware. If you only have a few dishes to wash, it’s best to wait until you have a full load before starting your dishwasher. If you really need the dirty dish, it’s more affordable to wash it by hand. Just remember not to leave your faucet running while you scrub the dish.
5. Consider Switching Energy Companies
The energy companies you use to supply your gas and/or electricity can have a huge impact on your monthly utility bills. At Usave.co.uk/energy/, they estimate that you can save as much as £200 by simply switching your energy providers, and the process isn’t as difficult as you might think. In fact, it may only take you a few minutes to determine which energy provider is right for your household and to start the process of changing providers. Once you’ve started the process and chosen a provider, you’ll start receiving electricity from your new provider in as little as 21 days.
6. Consider Getting an Energy Audit
Lastly, consider getting an energy audit from your new or existing energy provider. Most utility companies offer this service for free. All you have to do is call your energy provider and ask for a home energy audit. The utility company will send an energy auditor to your home to determine where you are wasting power and the low and no-cost solutions you can implement to save money.
By utilizing these tips and tricks, you could notice a significant decrease in the amount of energy you use each month. Some homes may even be able to reduce their consumption by as much as 50 percent. Just think of what you could do with all that savings.