It is fair to say that everyone likes saving money. Paying less for something is desirable and universally understood. One of the most common expenses in households around the world is the electricity or power bill. By reducing the amount of power you use, you will also lower your bill. There are some incredibly easy and free ways to accomplish this, but there are more drastic options for those ready to seriously dive in. This article will delve into both the simple and complex methods to use less energy at home.
Quick, Simple, and Easy
Turn off electronics you are not using. Its true, the basic lesson we learned as kids holds true today. Turn off lights, TVs, appliances, heating and cooling units when you are not using them. There is no reason to leave these electronics running when you are out of the house or asleep. Many electronics, like computers, have energy saving options that will turn the device off or put it to sleep after a period of inactivity. Take advantage of these options and manually shut down the devices that don’t have this feature.
Additionally, switching to LED light bulbs can help to save up to 80% off your lighting costs. LED light bulbs are more than just light sources, they are vastly improved light sources. Traditional bulbs require more power to light and burn out more frequently than LED bulbs. Not only will you need to replace LED bulbs less frequently, but they will shine brighter all while costing less money to keep on.
Air drying your clothes and dishes might be old fashioned, but it will save you energy and money. The dry cycle on a dishwasher and a clothing dryer both suck up a lot of power as they need to generate heat. Rather than using energy to force these items to dry faster, let the air do the work. If you run your dishwasher at night you will wake up to dry dishes, no time wasted. Air drying your dishes can cut dishwasher energy usage by 15-50%. Hang your clothes up to allow them to air dry rather than sticking them in the dryer. Simple routine adjustments will make it so this change barely impacts your life all while saving you money.
Furthermore, you can install a smart or programmable thermostat that can be set to turn off your heating and cooling system when you are away or asleep. On average, a programmable thermostat can save you $180 a year. This more than makes up for the initial cost of the new upgraded thermostat and costs far less than upgrading your entire HVAC system. A programmable thermostat makes it so you can use your HVAC system as normal, but cuts down on superfluous usage to conserve energy and save money.
Solar – Big and Small
Solar power is not a new idea or technology. These panels absorb the sun’s light and convert it into electricity. Solar panels produce electricity that have the potential to power an entire house. Due to this ability, houses with solar panels won’t need to always pull electricity from the electrical grid, therefore reducing monthly power bills.
Although there have been solar panels for years, only recently are they becoming a legitimate power source for the average consumer. Home owners across the country are adding solar energy to their daily lives, in one form or another. These solar options are made from some of the best materials and components possible.
For those looking to commit to solar, roof mounted solar panels are the way to go. Solar panels are no longer crazy expensive, in fact the cost of installing a single solar panel has dropped by 60% and it is expected to decrease further in the coming years.There are even incentives to installing solar panels. EnergySage explains, “…the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is one of the primary incentives available to anyone interested in solar energy, as it allows you to deduct 30 percent of the cost of installing a solar system from your federal taxes.” If your panels take in enough sun, which depends on where you live and where you install your panels, they can power your entire home.
Saving energy, and therefore money, in your home has never been easier. Hopefully this guide has given you new ideas to conserve power in big and small ways.