There have been lots of innovations in green technology to reverse our impact on the environment. From cutting down plastic consumption to reducing carbon emissions, efforts are on to cut down on practices that harm the environment.
As a homeowner, you can do your part by making your home more energy-efficient. An energy-efficient home reduces your overall impact on the environment. It also offers other benefits in the form of financial incentives from the government and saving up on utility bills.
Energy-proofing your home is quite simple once you formulate a plan. If you don’t know where to start, you can include the following tips in your home energy efficiency plan to make things easier.
Conduct An Energy Audit
An energy audit should be your first step in energy conservation efforts. It will help you figure out if the appliances and systems in your home need repair or replacement and thus functioning inefficiently. Most utility companies conduct free energy audits or charge a nominal fee.
Enlisting the help of professional service providers can help you understand how your home’s energy system works and its contribution to your utility bills. The professionals use various equipment like blower doors, infrared cameras, surface thermometers, etc., to identify areas for optimizing energy savings. After their analysis, they’ll provide you with a list of recommendations that can enhance your home’s energy efficiency in a cost-effective manner.
Insulate Your Home
Sealing your home entry points is one of the most budget-friendly ways to make your home cozy and energy-efficient. A properly sealed home can improve the comfort and air quality inside your home. Mail slots, electrical outlets, attic hatches, window frames, poor weatherstripping around doors are some of the common places where air leakage may occur.
You can apply caulk between stationary objects and weatherstrip your doors and windows.You can do these actions by yourself.
Get A Programmable Thermostat
You can set a programmable thermostat to turn off or, otherwise, optimize your indoor temperatures. This device eliminates wasteful energy use by when no one is home or when you’re asleep. Additionally, some models also indicate when it’s time to replace air filters or when your HVAC system has other problems.
Optimize Appliance Energy Consumption
The large appliances in your home like washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, and others are the major culprits when it comes to wasting energy. Maintenance is key to ensure smooth operation of your appliances. Consider replacing old or run-down appliances with Energy Star labeled ones.
If you don’t want to replace your appliances, implement these tips –
- Use a minimal amount of cool water to wash your clothes unless there are stains. Switching your washer’s temperature from hot to warm cuts energy use to half.
- Place your refrigerator away from appliances that generate heat. Keep it a few inches away from the wall.
- Unplug your laptop or cell phone chargers when not in use.
Check Your Home Systems
You can consider purchasing a new Energy Star certified HVAC system. A new HVAC system will be an expensive investment but can save you money in utility bills and can add to your home’s value.
If you don’t want to buy a whole new system, you can consider conducting regular HVAC tune-ups. Regular maintenance of your heating and cooling systems is necessary for an energy-efficient home. Replace your air filters and keep up with professional service appointments when necessary.
Simple tips like unplugging your electronics, turning off lights when not in use, or using natural light can help you reduce your electricity consumption.
In honor of Earth day this month, plant trees around your home. Careful positioning of trees around your home can actually save up to 25% of your HVAC use. Placing trees at the south and the west of your home will keep your home cool in the summer. If you are a homeowner with a small or no yard, you can place potted plants inside your home.
There are various professional services that can help you in your energy conservation efforts. As mentioned above, energy audit companies will analyze your energy use and suggest recommendations. Leading home warranty companies, apart from repair and replacement, offer maintenance services for your appliances and systems. You can also use the services of insulation experts to seal your home’s entryways.
82.3% of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions are from domestic households. Limiting our energy use can effectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Implementing the above tips will assist you in doing your part for the environment, and can also educate the next generation about energy conservation.