Energy efficiency is on everyone’s mind in this day and age. We are all trying to live more sustainable lives seeing as how it affects not only us, but our planet as well. In addition to saving us money, energy-efficient homes also reduce unnecessary energy usage, emissions of greenhouse gases and the demand for finite resources.
The good thing about energy efficiency is that anyone can take part. While there are things that might be more expensive when it comes to this approach, there are also strategies that do not require you to spend a lot. Here are some ways how you can make your home more sustainable.
Conduct an energy audit
Calling an expert to conduct an energy audit might be the best first move. They can tell you where you are using and losing the most energy and then you can focus on your priorities. Alternatively, you can also do it yourself.
Think about replacing your doors and windows
Some older models of doors and windows are not energy-efficient, which could lead to you losing cool air during the summer and heat during the colder months. You definitely do not want this to happen, as you will be using more energy to cool or heat your home and it will keep escaping through the poor-quality windows and doors. You should consider installing new double-glazed windows and energy-efficient doors. While on the topic of windows, you can also invest in blinds that will keep the heat from entering your home.
Check whether your insulation needs improving
However, new doors and windows will be of no use in case your insulation is not adequate. Make sure to check your attic and basement as these are the areas where the warm and cool air usually escape. You can insulate your home on your own or call in the professionals who are bound to do it in no time.
Change your light bulbs
One easy change that we all can do is replace our traditional light bulbs with LED or CFL ones. They are a bit more expensive but the benefits are worth it. They emit less heat and use less energy. You don’t have to replace everything at once. For example, get one new light bulb every month until all the light fixtures are taken care of.
Keep an eye on your water consumption
You have to implement better habits when it comes to using water. For example, turn off the water while brushing your teeth and washing the dishes. Furthermore, you can invest in low-flow showerheads and taps as well as low-flush toilets. Also, make sure you have no leaks as a dripping toilet can waste around 60,000 liters of water a year. If you have a yard, you can also collect greywater and use it for watering the lawn.
Invest in ENERGY STAR-rated appliances
It is understandable that you cannot replace all your appliances at once but when shopping for new kitchen gadgets, you should look for energy-efficient models, especially those with the ENERGY STAR rating. While this might be a pricier investment, it will pay off in the long run as you will have lower energy bills.
Turn off appliances when not in use
Unplugging various appliances and devices when they are not being used is something you should turn into a habit. Do not keep your laptop or phone charger plugged in overnight as they use energy even if turned off. Turn off the lights during the day or when no one is in the room. Not only is this eco-friendly but it can help avoid potential electric fire incidents.
Install a programmable thermostat
Getting a programmable thermostat for your home is a great way to cut down on energy consumption. For example, there is no need to heat or cool the house if no one is there. Therefore, you can save a lot of money if you set it on a lower setting during the day.
Look into your solar options
While solar panels are probably the best investment one can make in order to be more sustainable, not everyone can afford it. However, if you can, definitely look into your options as these panels can pay for themselves in a couple of years, depending on the model. You will be producing your own electricity and if you have extra, you can sell it to the grid.
There are so many little things you can do to be more energy-efficient. With that in mind, find what works best for you and implement it in your home.