Is anyone else tired of being surprised when they receive their energy bill? It’s by far one of the most complicated bills to budget for. There’s always some increase or associated cost you weren’t aware of, and your usage levels are constantly on the rise. It’s not one of those bills you can just eliminate altogether (which is a bummer), yet you can do something about it. Outside of looking for a more affordable service provider in your area, you can make your home more efficient. Check out these household hacks to try to decrease in your energy bill like you’ve never seen before.
Schedule an Energy Audit – When is the last time an electrician came to audit your home? If it was before closing on your home or when you moved in, you may be due for a visit. The auditor will inspect areas of your home to determine where you may be losing energy. They can explain ways in which to correct the problem. While some of these solutions will be discussed below, if you live in an older home you may need to hire a service provider to complete installation services likes an electric panel upgrade to reduce the likelihood of a fire and to reduce energy consumption.
Seal Up the Holes – Those tiny holes or gaps you see around your windows and doors could be the escape route for a lot of your warm and cool air. It is recommended that you go around the house and seal up the holes, gaps, and cracks you may see. You can do this with plastic and tape, weatherstripping, or caulk depending on where the holes are. This helps to keep your air in, which helps with regulating temperatures and preventing you from having to crank up the heat or air conditioner to feel comfortable.
Have the HVAC Serviced – A lot of energy is wasted on heating and cooling. If you want to get those costs down you’ll need to maintain your HVAC system properly. A system that is constantly in use but never serviced will begin to deteriorate. It will eventually lose efficiency and have to work doubly hard to keep the home at the temperature you’d like. It is important to do things like clean the vents and ducts as well as regularly replace filters. An annual service contract with an HVAC company can ensure all of this is done and that your system stays intact.
Replace Appliances – Kitchen appliances, in particular, can use a lot of energy. Appliances like the stove and refrigerator are constantly draining some form of energy so it is a good idea to make sure you have the most efficient brands. If your kitchen appliances are out of date you might consider looking for brands that have the Energy Star rating on them. They are held to certain regulations and utilize the least amount of energy to operate.
Plant Trees – The heat from the sun is intense enough to drive you crazy in the summer. The outside heat makes the temperatures in your home feel even hotter, forcing you to crank up the air conditioner. You can reduce the amount of direct sunlight that sits on your home by planting a few trees. They provide ample shade and keep the area cool so you can lay off that air conditioner.
Unplug Things Not in Use – Did you know that even when things are turned off or not in use, that there is still energy being sent to them? This includes computers, gaming consoles, and other electronic devices you may have plugged in. Start unplugging those things when you’re not using them. If it’s too much work, plug them into a power strip. This way, you can simply unplug the strip instead.
Try Alternative Energy Sources – If you really want to put an end to your high energy bills then switch energy sources. You could go for solar power or wind-generated power options. They may be a bit expensive as initial investments; however, it will greatly reduce your energy consumption and costs.
Try these household hacks in your home. Some of them may require a sizeable initial investment, however, it will pay for itself in no time at all. The average household spends about $2200 a year on their energy bills. Stop watching your money go down the drain each month with these easy to complete steps listed above. It’s also a great way to help the environment – which is always a plus.