With New England being so cold as of late, this means raising the temperature of our homes to stay cozy warm. But what are some ways we can save money in our homes and how can make our homes run on less energy? It is easy to do with just a little time researching and taking advantage of the most up to date knowledge of home energy efficiency systems. But we have made it simple with some not so often thought about ways to save money and energy!
1. Replace incandescent lights.
- The average household dedicates 11% of its energy budget to lighting. The use of new lighting technologies, such as LEDs and compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), can reduce the CFL Saves Money vs. Incandescentenergy use required by lighting by 50% to 75%.
- Advances in lighting controls offer further energy savings by reducing the amount of time that lights are on but not being used.
2. Install efficient shower heads and toilets.
- Low-flow showerheads. They are available in different flow rates, and some have a pause button which shuts off the water while the bather lathers up;
- Low-flow toilets. Yes even toilets consume 30% to 40% of the total water used in home.
3. Use appliances and electronics responsibly
- Refrigerators and freezers should not be located near the stove, dishwasher or heat vents, or exposed to direct sunlight.
Exposure to warm areas will force them to use more energy to remain cool.
- Computers should be shut off when not in use.
- Chargers, such as those used for laptops and cell phones, consume energy when they are plugged in. When they are not connected to electronics, chargers should be unplugged.
- Laptop computers consume considerably less electricity than desktop computer.
4. Cook smart
- Convection ovens are more efficient that conventional ovens. They use fans to force hot air to circulate more evenly, thereby allowing food to be cooked at a lower temperature. Convection ovens use approximately 20% less electricity than conventional ovens.
- Microwave ovens consume approximately 80% less energy than conventional ovens.
- Pans should be placed on the matching size heating element or flame.
- Using lids on pots and pans will heat food more quickly than cooking in uncovered pots and pans.
- Pressure cookers reduce cooking time dramatically.
- When using conventional ovens, food should be placed on the top rack. The top rack is hotter and will cook food faster.
5. Change the way you do laundry
- Wait until you have a full load of clothes, as the medium setting saves less than half of the water and energy used for a full load.
- Avoid using high-temperature settings when clothes are not very soiled.
- Clean the lint trap every time before you use the dryer. Not only is excess lint a fire hazard, but also it will prolong the amount of time required for your clothes to dry.
- Spin-dry or wring clothes out before putting them into a dryer.
Homeowners who take the initiative to make these changes usually discover that the energy savings are more than worth the effort. NACHI Certified Inspectors, such us Premier Home Inspection Services, can make this process much easier because we can perform a more comprehensive assessment of energy-savings potential than the average homeowner can. With thermal imaging we can determine temperature changes to see where cold and hot air are escaping! We serve all of Southern NH, including the greater Hollis, Bedford and Amherst areas. We utilize the latest technology to meet our client’s needs and invite you to see how we can help increase the comfort of your home this season and help you save money in the process.
*Above information used with permission from InterNACHI (www.nachi.org)