Have you ever wondered why some people manage to have such lower energy bills than others? No, it’s not because they never run the AC. It isn’t because they have zero electrical appliances either. People with low gas and electric bills have energy-smart habits and install strategic upgrades that make their homes more energy-efficient.
HOW TO GET LOWER ENERGY BILLS
Ready to start saving? Use these tips below to shrink your monthly utility bills one step at a time.
1. Routinely check and change the air filter in your heating and cooling system.
A typical air filter can last for up to 90 days, according to the manufacturers. But should you leave the filter in that long? A dust-clogged air filter blocks air from flowing into your HVAC system, reducing its efficiency and increasing the chances of a frozen evaporator coil.
Bottom line: don’t wait until 90 days to change the filter. Set up reminders on your phone to check on the filter regularly so that it becomes a habit, and stock up on filters so that you always have one on hand.
2. Swap out traditional incandescent light bulbs for LEDs.
According to the Department of Energy, LEDs use approximately 25% to 80% less energy than traditional incandescents and can last 3 to 25 times longer. Not only do they save money by using less energy, but you also don’t need to replace them as often. It’s a win-win.
3. Use your washing machine and dishwasher’s no-heat settings whenever possible.
There are two energy-saving reasons to wash your clothes in cold water and use your dishwasher’s no-heat dry setting:
- You won’t use energy to generate heat.
- Your appliances won’t release as much humidity into your indoor air.
Muggy air takes longer for your air conditioner to cool and dehumidify, which means your AC needs to use more energy to make your home comfortable.
4. Keep up with HVAC maintenance.
Changing the filter and hosing dust off of the outdoor unit are two things you can do on your own. However, you’ll need a professional to perform the nitty-gritty maintenance, such as cleaning the coils, tightening any loose components, adding lubrication, and checking refrigerant levels.
Without annual maintenance, your system’s performance is guaranteed to go downhill, while its energy use will only increase. Additionally, your system is more likely to have part failures because no one is servicing the equipment or inspecting it for potential issues. Routine maintenance is the best prevention against these problems and is the most effective way to keep your cooling costs low.
5. Invest in energy-efficient window treatments.
Your home can gain and lose a lot of heat through its windows, forcing your HVAC system to work overtime. You can prevent this issue by equipping your windows with blinds and curtains that have insulating properties. These window treatments will block heat from entering your home during summer and keep heat from leaving it during winter.
If you like more traditional draperies, opt for thermal curtains, which come in a variety of styles and colors. For something more fitted to a window, choose insulated cellular shades or Roman shades, also available in numerous colors.
6. Upgrade your home’s insulation, especially in the attic and crawlspace.
The key thing to remember about heat is that it will always try to move where there is less heat. Insulation prevents heat from moving and keeps it where you want it. However, insulation can lose its effectiveness over time from factors like settling, rodent activity, or exposure to the elements.
If you’re experiencing extremely uneven temperatures in your home, especially right above the crawlspace or directly below the attic, your home could likely benefit from improved insulation.
7. Use table, floor, or ceiling fans in occupied rooms.
Did you know that an electric fan can make you feel up to 10 degrees cooler? It’s also much cheaper to run than a central air conditioner. Using fans can help you substantially reduce your reliance on your AC during warm weather.
Fun Fact: Ceiling fans can also be used to make a room warmer during winter. Make sure the fan is spinning clockwise at a low speed so that it will pull cool air up toward the ceiling.
At Logan Home Energy Services, we are your total home comfort specialists in Mooresville, Winston-Salem, and nearby areas in North Carolina. For assistance with your home’s HVAC system, electrical system, or insulation, contact us online today or give us a call at (336) 203-7630.