As a homeowner, energy efficiency should be at the top of your list. You will soon realize that flagrantly leaving lights on and not maintaining basic appliances will lead to bigger and bigger utility bills. Not to mention, you are also contributing to the millions of surplus tons of carbon emissions that are rising to our atmosphere and causing stranger and more destructive weather conditions. Luckily, there are a number of ways to be more energy efficient and eco-friendly. First, though, you have to be prepared to get in the habit of putting eco-friendliness to the front of your mind, because that is the only way to really make a difference in your home. Here are the top residential energy efficiency tips for homeowners.
- Just unplug. Just because a cellphone, tablet or personal computer says that it’s done charging, it doesn’t mean that it is not using energy. Indeed, these are called vampire appliances because they keep using energy even when they don’t need to be using energy. So, make sure that you unplug these gadgets when they are done charging. You also want to remind yourself to turn off any other appliances that don’t need to be on and unplug items that don’t need to be plugged in.
- Switch it off. Many owners waste energy by not turning off lights when they should be off. For one thing, all your light bulbs should be updated to CFL and LED models – that is your first step to saving money when it comes to lighting. Also, when you leave a room, you want to turn off all the lights in that room. Every time you leave a room with all the lights on, you are wasting a lot of energy. So, remind yourself to switch off before you leave a room.
- Maintain your appliances. If you don’t take semi-annual measures to maintain your systems – preventing future damages and increasing efficiency – you will be dealing with an ever widening carbon footprint and higher than usual energy bills. Out of all the benefits of semi-annual preventative maintenance, though, efficiency is at the top of the list. This is especially the case with your HVAC system, so make sure to swap out the filter and clean out the unit whenever you can.
- Get an energy audit. There are many ways to audit and analyze your home for major energy leaks. One of the most effective methods is the blower door test. This test requires installing an instrument to your door that blows air in and out of your house to search for energy leaks and drafts. Once you have a comprehensive idea as to where all the leaks are, you can effectively seal them up.
- Remain proactive. When it comes to energy efficiency, simply keeping it at the front of your mind is critical. It is imperative because there will always be a time when you can choose the easiest route or you can take a few extra steps for the sake of the environment. In the end, being more energy efficient isn’t only important for the sake of saving money, it’s also important for the sake of helping save the world.