7 Secrets To Reduce Energy Use In Your Home
December 4, 2016
Out of all the bills you and your family are likely to receive, energy bills are perhaps the most frustrating. They can be quite high, but perhaps the most frustrating thing about them is not understanding how you can reduce energy use in your home so the bill is not astronomical when it arrives. The good news is, we have compiled a list of seven of the most effective secrets to reducing your energy use.
Turn Off Lights
In the evening hours, it makes sense that you would need to turn on a light in the kitchen while you are making dinner, or in the bathroom while you wash your hands. However, the need for the light ends when you exit a room, particularly if you will not be back there for a while. Leaving the light on when you are not in the room simply wastes electricity and makes your energy bill climb. Turn off the lights when you leave and your energy bill will thank you for it.
Look At Appliances
What appliances do you have in your home? This may surprise you, but major appliances can also be a source of major energy use in your home. However, you can do something about it. Check out your major appliances, particularly your refrigerator and dishwasher (if you have one). Are they energy efficient models? If not, consider replacing them. It may be a significant expense at first, but the savings in energy will more than make up for it.
Operate in Low Periods
Do you live in an area with time-of-use pricing? This means there are on-peak, mid-peak, and off-peak times for using energy in your home. On-peak has the highest price tag attached, while off-peak has the lowest. Whenever possible, do as many of the tasks that take the most energy during the off-peak times. This is often your laundry or even cooking something in the oven. Perhaps change your habits so you shower in the evening, during the off-peak period. To help with this, here are the current rates for Ontario.
Unplug All Possible Devices
Do you leave things plugged in all day? Even when these devices are not in use, they still use a certain amount of energy, often termed phantom power. You cannot unplug your refrigerator, but you can unplug lamps, phone chargers, even your washing machine! Make it a habit to unplug everything you can before you leave the house, or simply when these things are not in use. You will see a decent decrease in your energy use this way.
Did you know your water use can actually impact your energy bill? The most significant factors are how much water you use, and how much of that water is hot. Everyone enjoys a hot shower, sure, but long ones can raise your electricity bill. Try lukewarm water if you can stand it, or simply work to decrease the length of your shower. In addition, try washing as much laundry as you can in cold water to conserve energy. Some fabrics might require hot or warm water; this is fine, but for anything that does not specify, you can get away with cold.
Many homes are equipped with a central air conditioning system, however it is important to note that such systems require a lot of energy. They are indeed convenient, but if you are looking to decrease your energy use, consider ceiling fans or stationary fans you can plug into the wall. They can help circulate the air and cool down the temperature in your home, and they do not use nearly as much energy as your central air will. You do not have to move exclusively to fans, but perhaps jump on the time-of-use pricing discussed earlier and use fans in the on-peak periods.
Engage in Preventative Maintenance
Sometimes your air conditioner, furnace, et cetera are getting older or are simple working too hard, and that is why your energy use is increasing. To help curb this cost, engage in preventative maintenance with Hogg. This way, you can avoid costly repairs in the future, and reduce the strain on your units, which in turn will reduce your overall energy use. Make sure everything is operating at peak efficiency!
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