As climate and other environmental changes continue to impact the atmosphere, going green has become a goal for more individuals. By conserving resources, eliminating pollution, and reducing carbon footprints around the house, communities are forever improved. Those who are eco-friendly help to improve their health and contribute to a more sustainable world. Yet, what may not be realized by some, is that going green can also save you a lot of money – especially on your energy bill. Below, we’ll look at some ways to go green around the house and how these measures will drastically reduce your energy costs.
Get an Energy Audit
In order to make your home more efficient, you must first have a general idea of how you’re wasting energy. An energy audit, performed by an electrician, can give you a better understanding of where the most waste is and how to reduce or eliminate it. There are several tests that are conducted. A blower door test, for example, is the use of a large fan which is used to determine the airtightness of your house. Thermographic inspections are tests in which infrared scanners are used to determine if a property is thoroughly insulated. They will also inspect electrical wiring and use various tools to determine usage problems which could contribute to energy waste.
Service Your Heating and Cooling
Everyone appreciates having the ability to control the temperature of their home. Heating systems help to keep you warm in the winter while cooling systems keep you chilly in the summer. These systems work around the clock during these seasons to keep you comfortable and will require servicing on occasion. An overworked or outdated heater or air conditioner will suck up more energy to regulate temperatures which drive energy costs through the roof. Investing in an annual maintenance contract with service providers like Hiller will ensure that your HVAC system is working efficiently.
Though quality insulation is said to last about 80-100 years, it isn’t uncommon to need to replace insulation in certain areas of the home. The attic is one of those places. If you’ve noticed a huge surge in your energy bill, find it to be drafty upstairs, or have been informed by your energy auditor that you have low insulation, getting it replaced will save you a lot of money. Replacing the insulation is essentially affordable, but helps to keep the heat or cool air from escaping your home. This allows you to lighten up on the usage of your heater or air conditioner.
Seal Up Cracks
If the energy audit determined that your home is not as airtight as it should be, you may be told to seal up cracks in your home. Cracks and holes that lead directly to the outside allow air to escape. They are commonly found around the windows and doors of a property. You can easily seal these access points with weatherstripping, plastic, or caulk. If you have the money to invest, and your windows and doors are old, you might also consider upgrading to more efficient ones to get rid of those cracks and help keep the air in your home.
Small Lifestyle Changes
After completing the above recommended green tips around the house, if you still find your energy bill to be high, there may be some changes you need to make to your lifestyle or daily routines. Below are a few quick things you could try to reduce your carbon footprint and save on your utility bill:
- Wash clothes in cold water
- Dry your clothes outside when the weather permits
- Unplug electronics when not in use
- Keep curtains or blinds closed in the summer to keep the heat off your home
- Wear a robe or use extra blankets to minimize heater usage
- Turn the thermostat down during the day when no one is home
- Install a low-flow shower head and take shorter showers
Who knew that reducing your consumption of some of the world’s natural resources would also help to save you money? These are just a few changes you can make. There are a ton more from installing IFC walls, opting for a tankless water heater, and even switching to renewable energy options through your service provider.
Whether you want to do more to help the global ecosystem, improve your health, or reduce the cost of your energy bills, it can all be done by making a few changes in the home. Start with an energy audit and then begin hiring contractors to help you make your property more efficient today.