September 8, 2022 by Tammy Proulx, Energy Project Coordinator
Creating an energy efficient home is not a change you make overnight. It is a series of small changes you can make every day, in every part of your home.
Energy efficiency means getting the most out of each unit of energy that you purchase while using it wisely to eliminate ways that your home wastes energy.
Making your home more efficient will make it more comfortable, safer, healthier, and save you money.
What is Energy Efficiency and Conservation? Energy Efficiency and Conservation is doing more with the same amount of energy or less energy.
Unsure of where to start on making your home more energy efficient? Here are some small tips to get you and your family started.
Lowering your energy costs is easy when you switch to LED light bulbs. Start with the lights that you use most often. Any lights that you use more than 2-hours per day is a good candidate for LED bulbs. LED’s make more light with less electricity and they also last longer, saving you more money in your wallet.
The water heater is the 2nd largest energy user in most homes. One reason for this is that we use a lot of water. Another reason is that we pay twice for water – once for the cost of water itself and again for the cost of heating the water. Reducing the amount of hot water that you use will save money on both bills.
Kitchens are home to appliances that use a lot of electricity and water. You can save up to 5,000 gallons of water each year using a modern dishwasher instead of washing dishes by hand.
Living rooms are where most of the electronic devices in our homes can be found. We watch TV, turn on the computer, and use other electronics in our living room, resulting in the costs adding up. Your electronics can draw energy even while they are turned off. The living room is perfect for other energy saving measures as well, especially if it has multiple windows, a fireplace, or several air vents.
Heat is the biggest energy expense in your home. Most homes have a Furnace or HVAC for a heating system. These systems are regulated by a thermostat, which tells the system how much energy to use and control the temperature in your home. Use a Programmable Thermostat to save energy. Have a professional Inspection and tune up on your Furnace and HVAC systems: Oil burning furnaces should be checked every year. HVAC systems should be maintenance also once a year. And check filters for replacement or cleaning throughout the year.
Cooling your home is just as important as heating it. Before you turn on the air conditioner, reduce your need for cooling. Use fans and natural ventilation first. Make sure your air conditioner is running as efficiently as possible. Clean filters on a regular basis: Why? Dirty or clogged filters block airflow and reduce efficiency.
Your home uses energy through many machines in many places, and it Is important that you take measures to operate each of these as safely as possible.
Decreasing your energy use means making changes throughout your home. Make each change as safely as possible and install some additional safety features, such as a carbon monoxide alarm.
With these simple steps and monitoring your changes, you’ll be saving in no time! Energy efficiency is a journey, not a destination.
Tammy Proulx is the Energy Project Coordinator for the Department of Community Services & Infrastructure. To learn more about this article, Tammy can be reached at Tproulx@cmmns.com or 902-324-3826