Since today is Earth Day, I thought it would be good to share some ideas on how to be more energy efficient. There are many things you can do to help make your home more energy efficient. Including our favorite, use interlined draperies in your home to keep the cold and heat out! Read on for more ideas that will help you save money in both the winter and summer months:
Get rid of energy vampires: cell phone chargers, electric toothbrushes, and other appliances still consume electricity even if they are not in use or turned off. By plugging them in just when they need to be used, you can save on average 6-8% of electricity, which accounts for an overall amount of $7 billion nationwide.
Replace Incandescent Bulbs: in 2014, manufacturers stopped producing 60-watt and 40-watt incandescent light bulbs (100-watt and 75-watt bulbs were already phased out). But we’re not doomed to live in the dark. Halogen bulbs, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs offer longer lasting light and are more energy-efficient than your old incandescent bulbs. Since the average home uses 40 bulbs, switching over to greener bulbs is a great way to save on your electrical bill.
Reverse your ceiling fan in winter: ceiling fans are more energy efficient than air conditioners, so if you can make the switch, do so. Secondly, ceiling fans can help keep your home warmer in the winter by simple reversing the fan’s direction to spin clockwise. In doing so, you’ll push the hot air downwards so that any heating that rises will be evenly distributed throughout your home.
Add Insulation to Your Attic: adding insulation to your attic can help seal air leaks and improve your home’s heating and cooling costs. The amount of insulation needed to cover your attic depends on your home’s size and the climate in your region, but you will recoup your money in a couple of years.
Wash your clothes with warm or cold water: 90% of the electricity consumed by your washer is used to heat up water. The next time you put a load in, make sure that you use soap that can be used with cold or warm water and adjust the settings.
Switch to low flow showers heads: the average shower head uses 5 gallons of water per minute, but changing them with low flow options you can reduce your consumption to 2.5 gallons per minute or less.
Buy Energy Star Products: Energy Star products, such as refrigerators, televisions, stoves, washers and air conditioners, meet energy-efficient specifications set by the EPA. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10-50% less energy than standard appliances and help reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. If you plan to replace an appliance soon, consider getting an Energy Star-certified product.
Window treatments & rugs insulate your home: window treatments and rugs can be strategically used to maintain your home’s temperature. In the winter draw your drapes or shades at night to block out the cold air and keep the warmth in. Interlining your window coverings can add added insulation properties. Contact us for more information on this.