While people are urged to stay at home due to the coronavirus pandemic, many are worried about an increase in utility bills at a time when many are struggling with finances. Spending more time at home means using more electricity, water, food and much more.
Although today more and more people are committing to going green, implementing energy saving strategies is motivated not only by the desire to protect the environment but also to save money on utility bills.
Fortunately, it’s not hard to jump on the eco-conscious bandwagon. Here are some of the many ways you can go green by saving energy while forced to stay at home:
What is the Best Way to Save Energy At Home?
Many people want to save energy at home in order to lower their monthly utility bills, but they worry that this means making major lifestyle changes. Fortunately, that’s not the case. There are plenty of simple changes you can make to save energy at home, including:
- Invest in a programmable thermostat so you can set your heating and cooling system to automatically turn off during the hours you are away.
- Clean your air filters to ensure your air conditioner runs as efficiently as possible.
- Make sure the air vents in your home are not covered by furniture, curtains, or drapes that could block the airflow.
- An empty refrigerator uses more energy than a full one, so keep your refrigerator fully stocked at all times.
- Keep the oven door closed when cooking so heat does not escape. If you need to check on your food, use the oven light instead.
- Use the “moisture sensor” on your dryer so it automatically shuts off when your clothes are dry.
- Wash your clothing in cold water, which will clean your clothes just as well as warm water.
- Lower the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Turn your water heater off if you plan to spend some time away from your home so it doesn’t waste energy on heating water that no one will use. Some families will have to move to care for their elderly loved ones.
- Close your shades, blinds, or curtains if the temperature rises outside to shield your home from the sun’s heat.
- Unplug your charger if your smartphone, laptop, or tablet is fully charged. The charger will continue to consume energy if it’s plugged into the wall–even if it’s not charging a device.
Following these tips will help you conserve energy and lower your monthly utility bills without sacrificing your comfort.
What Energy Efficient Upgrades Can I Make At Home?
In light of the coronavirus pandemic, many families are practicing social distancing by staying home. Since you’re spending more time at home, now is the perfect time to start making energy efficient upgrades around the house. Here are the upgrades you should prioritize:
- Download the HomeSelfe app on your smartphone and conduct a free energy audit of your home. The app will help you identify areas that need to be improved upon and potential energy savings opportunities. The best part? It only takes about five minutes to complete!
- Install low flow showerheads. Replacing just one of the shower heads in your home with a low flow model will help you save about 2,900 gallons of water per year.
- Use the free time while at home to attach motion sensors on your lights outside to ensure they only light up when motion is detected.
- Replace all light bulbs at home with energy-efficient lighting, which will last longer and consume less energy.
- Seal the air leaks around your doors and windows with a caulking gun. Sealing these cracks and holes will prevent cool air from escaping in the summer and warm air from escaping in the winter. This easy project can reduce your heating and cooling costs by up to 30%.
- Put an insulating blanket around your water heater to reduce standby heat losses by 25-45%. This simple DIY project can reduce your annual energy bill by up to 16%!
Making these upgrades around your home will not only improve your energy efficiency, but it will also help you stay busy, which is great for people who are feeling restless while they practice social distancing.
Go Green At Home
We are going through difficult times these days with the measures we have to take to stop the coronavirus from spreading. Be conscious of your family’s energy usage as there are many ways to save energy everywhere. Start implementing some of these strategies today so you can protect the planet, and save money on your utility bills at home.