Maybe you, like many others, feel a pretty consistent dread towards your impending utility bill. It can be shocking how much comfort costs within your own home! Thankfully, there are a number of easy ways to reduce your utility bills without sacrificing that comfort. Innovative technologies, effective alternative resources, and minor alterations to your home (and even your own habits) can make a big difference on the energy expense of your home and lifestyle. Try one or try them all and see which ones help your bills lower!
Adjust Thermostat When You Aren’t Home
If you aren’t there to enjoy the heat or coolness of your home, don’t pay for it! Knowing that you’re going to be away from your home for more than an hour or so, set your thermostat to a more natural temperature. Depending on your location and climate, this may vary. Keep in mind that the farther away from your target temperature your home is at, the harder your heating and cooling systems have to work to adjust the temperature of the entire house. Find a balance so that you are just cool enough or just warm enough to not be uncomfortable; you’ll be surprised at how quickly your body adjusts to this being a normal temperature to live at!
Lightbulbs use a lot of energy to produce a lot of light. Normal light bulbs have no way of controlling themselves to produce anything but that—a lot of light! Using dimmers offers the option of controlling how much energy (and therefore how much light) a lightbulb produces. This not only lowers the cost of your overall lightbulb energy expenses, it can prolong the life of your light bulbs themselves, making them a more cost effective expense. Living rooms, bedrooms, movie rooms, all can benefit from the option of lower lighting: bring enough to get around, but low enough to create a mood or force attention on a “spotlight” (like a TV).
Switch to Propane
Propane is a dependable, safe source of energy. As a fuel-burning power source rather than an electric one, it can actually reach higher temperatures than those electric sources can, and in much shorter times. This means that while your electric heater takes a bit of time to work itself up to the desired temperature, the propane heater can reach it much more quickly and expend less energy doing so—in other words, it costs less to maintain your target heat! Propane is also a great heating source for kitchen appliances like a stove or oven, and is often used for water heaters. It is also nontoxic, so you are safe from risk of poisoning (and the environment is safe as well!) Finally, using propane allows more freedom when it comes to things like providers and contracts—owning your own source of power instead of relying on local power sources makes your home more versatile for contractors to work with.
Install Energy Efficient Appliances
Appliances require a significant chunk of financial investment if you intend on keeping them running constantly. Take advantage of innovative appliances that save you money in utility costs: update the old washers or dryers that are costing you more money to run than they are worth! Look into features like ceiling fans that can provide air circulation and cool down your home without you even needing to turn on the air conditioning. Dehumidifiers may help for humid climates; air purifiers can help keep vents clean and clear of blockage that would affect air flow. If you take the time to look and commit to investing well, there are a variety of effective options that will save you money and stress.
Try Smart Home Technology
Another helpful tech innovation is smart home technology. Through smart home tech platforms, you can easily conserve energy from your own smartphone, without having to dedicate much brain power or investigation into your utilities. Alarms are installed that can alert you of open doors letting out the cold or warm air that you want to keep inside, or of lights and appliances left on that are draining unnecessary energy. Stay in control of your energy use by staying aware of what is going on inside of it. If this system sounds like something you could benefit from, look into different platforms and what they offer. These products can save you from small things building up into big charges on your bill.
Check for Small Damages to Your Home
Fixing the little things in your home that seem insignificant may actually make a significant difference in your utility costs! Cracks or holes in your ventilation systems, windows, walls and roofing of your home invite the temperature you want to have in your home to escape outside… repair things like this, or any issues with seals around doors and windows, to keep your heating and cooling where you want it. Faucets are another good thing to check; leaks add up quickly, so fix any dripping sinks, tubs and shower heads. Look at your utility bill for expenses that seem abnormally high or concerning and investigate reasons that may be the case! You may come across a repair that will save you on future bills.
Create Good Habits
Last but not least, if you can change up a few of your habits or implement a few goals and routines into your lifestyle, you may find that your utility costs decrease considerably. Make a schedule for your heating or cooling systems to run while you actually need them. Wear an extra layer or a lighter layer depending on the season. Try air drying clothes, or taking shorter showers, or cooking more during the winter to let your appliances do some of the heating work instead of the heater trying to get there on its own! Hand wash the larger kitchen tools, and train your brain to simply turn off the light when you leave a room. Each of these things are small adjustments that will manifest a serious save in your finances.
Your utility bill doesn’t have to be a source of major anxiety and frustration. Save money by investing in quality, efficient tools and changes in your own life or home maintenance!
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