It wouldn’t make sense to switch from premium to unleaded gasoline in your car and then take off like a jackrabbit when traffic lights turn green.
In the same way, you can’t expect a new energy-efficient furnace to deliver cost savings if your windows and doors are drafty and your ducts are poorly insulated. You must take a whole-house approach to saving energy, considering every component.
So by all means: follow these tips for saving energy at home. They’ll add up. In fact, you may be able to cut your energy bill by as much as 25 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Just be sure that you check for and fix air leaks around your windows, doors, light and plumbing fixtures, switches and electrical outlets. Then check the insulation in your attic, crawl space and basement.
Now watch those savings add up when you:
- Get in the habit of checking the filter on your air conditioner or furnace during the respective high season and replacing it when it’s dirty.
- Install a programmable thermostat or set your thermostat a few degrees higher when people are gone during the summer and a few degrees lower during the fall and winter. You can save up to 10 percent a year on cooling and heating if you can set back your thermostat for eight hours or more.
- Reduce your hot water heater setting to 120 degrees.
- Start the dishwasher only when it’s full. Let your dishes air dry instead of using the drying cycle.
- Similarly, let your laundry air dry as often as possible. If you’re worried about the stiffness that results from air drying, let your laundry mostly air dry and then toss it in the dryer when it’s merely damp. Check the lint filter after every use.
- Plug TVs, computers, stereos and DVD players into power strips. Flip the switch to off when you’re not using the equipment.
At Ross & Witmer, we know that every home is different and every family has different energy habits. Call us for a personalized consultation and we’ll offer you even more tips for saving energy at home.