Utility bills are on the rise and that means that homeowners and renters all across the country are looking for ways to decrease their energy costs without going cold this winter or getting too hot in the summer months. Finding the balance between having the energy you need and keeping your bills down takes finesse, but if you can master the balance, you will be more comfortable in the long run. These tips can help you to decrease your bills in small but meaningful ways.
Add Reflective Paint
During the summer, the goal is to stay cool, even if the weather isn’t cooperating. One thing you can do to reduce the amount of heat the sun lets in your home is to use reflective paint. That way, instead of absorbing the heat of the sun, your home will reflect it away, making it easier for your home to stay cool without needing the air conditioner to be turned up as high. There are many kinds of reflective paints, so you want to make sure that you are using the right paint for the job. This will help you to find the balance of a great look and better efficiency for your home.
Improve Your Insulation
When you are trying to cut down on energy costs, you don’t want to lose any of the precious energy you are paying for. Insulating your home can help you to cut down on your costs without making any changes to the way you use energy. It will simply prevent much of the energy waste that often occurs when heating or cooling a poorly insulated house. Most homes lack insulation in the attic, garage, and other storage areas, so that can be a good place to start if you are trying to figure out where to add in additional insulation.
Replace Your Windows
Old windows are not known for being energy efficient, but newer models can be maximized to save as much energy as possible. If you are thinking about improving the efficiency of your home and reducing your energy bills, new windows can be an excellent tool to make that happen. You can even invest in windows with three or even four panes of glass which will be more expensive upfront but you will save on energy bills over time, which will make up for the initial increase in costs. Make sure whatever windows you choose are designed to be energy efficient so you can get more out of your windows than just sunlight and a great view.
Replace Your Doors
Much like your windows, your doors are another place where it is easy for excess heat and cool air to escape. Newer doors are more efficient and can help to prevent energy loss throughout each year. In addition, replacing your entry door can save you money by reducing drafts. That means that you won’t have bursts of air weaseling their way into your home to make you cold when you are trying to bask in the heat of your HVAC system. Getting new doors can also increase your curb appeal and make your home generally more beautiful, so if that is something you are looking to do, don’t forget to look for an energy efficient front door.
Turn Off Electronics When Not in Use
This may seem like a very simple thing, but as many devices now simply go into sleep mode, it can be easy to forget that they should be turned off when they aren’t in use. Sleep mode does decrease the energy your electronics use, but it doesn’t get rid of all electricity waste. Turning off your electronic devices when you aren’t using them can help you to reduce waste and decrease your energy bills. Turning off light switches and trying to limit the unhelpful light and energy use in your house can also help to address this issue.
Replace Air Filters Regularly
Most people tend to forget about their air filter from time to time. And during that breach they can cause your HVAC system to become significantly less efficient. You should be changing your air filter at least once every couple of months, but once a month might be the right fit for your home depending on the kind of dust you have around and how much you are using your forced air heating and cooling. Replacing your air filters can also help you to reduce annoying allergies and ensure that your home is a safer place for you and your family.
Choose a Smart Thermostat
If you aren’t sure of your energy habits, it can be helpful to figure them out before you get started on changing them. A smart thermostat can help with both parts of this job. First it can help you track your energy use and second it can help you to change your habits to be more efficient. A smart thermostat is also incredibly convenient as you can access it from your home and adjust your heat from the bedroom or even the next town over as you drive home from work.
Use Lamps and Other Small Light Sources
A lot of energy is wasted when you use your overhead lighting all of the time. Switching to lighting that is more task oriented can help you to see better while also using much less energy. There are many kinds of task oriented lights, so you can add them to your home in a way that suits your habits and hobbies and makes it easier for you to get tasks done while also making sure that you aren’t consuming more energy than is necessary.
Cutting down on your energy bills is a great goal that will help your household and the environment. If you are looking for ways to make a big difference with a relatively small effort, these tips can help you do what you need. And then you will have a bit more extra money to spend on things that are more fun than utility bills.
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