Energy Saving Guide Part Two
As promised, here is part two of our energy saving guide. These are some more simple and smart ways to make your home more energy efficient and your wallet a little heavier. (If you missed it, read the first part of our energy saving guide.)
- Only use the amount of appliances you actually need: This means unplug your holiday back up fridge when it is not in use (two bottles of beer does not count as being in use). This also means to use your appliances properly. Refrigerators can be real energy guzzlers, but there are several ways to make them more energy efficient:
- Don't leave the door open for extended periods of time.
- Keep food away from the back wall.
- Don't put hot foods into the fridge, it makes your fridge work much harder than necessary.
- Thaw frozen foods in the fridge. This actually helps the fridge work less and keeps food fresher.
- Vacuum or dust cooling coils regularly to prevent unnecessary exertion on your fridge's engine.
- If your freezer is not a no-frost freezer, defrost it periodically.
- Use an energy efficient bulb in the fridge/freezer.
- Keep the refrigerator away from stoves and other appliances that will generate heat.
- Interior walls and sunlight will also make your refrigerator hotter, making it work more. In general, place the fridge in an area with room on all sides to give it sufficient air flow.
- Use more energy efficient appliances (energy star or energy saving rated). Always check the EER when buying a new appliance. New appliances run more efficiently and save more energy than the older models, as well.
- Use alternative energy sources such as solar panels, wind turbines, corn-burning stoves, gas burners and solar cooking units to save energy and keep your home running with beautiful energy efficiency.
Simple energy saving tips:
- Don't do half loads of washing machine or dish washers. Wait until they are full to save energy and hot water.
- Buy a low flow shower head for each shower in your home to conserve hot water.
- Let your ceiling fans work for you in the winter months by setting them to rotate in reverse, circulating warmer air down and around the room.
- Instead of driving everywhere, walk, bike, carpool, or go with public transit whenever possible.
- Use your thermostat properly, and use a timer so the house isn't being heated/cooled while no one is home.
- Turn down the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees. Who really needs it to be hotter than that?
- Use your window shades to allow or block sun in the respective summer/winter months.
- Standby mode is also a killer. Try to unplug appliances when not in use. Use a power strip so you can just switch off power to appliances that would be inconvenient to unplug each day, such as computers, televisions, and sound systems.
- You can actually get government tax incentives to supplement the cost of many of these improvements, so look into your local laws.