Ok, so we all can use a reminder of some things we can do to keep our energy costs down. Many of the tips below are not new, but we all get lazy and forgetful – especially when the temperature outside fluctuates as drastically as it has been in the ATL the last few months.
According to the EIA (Energy Information Agency), the average American home will spend over $900 on heating this year. Now those of you who live in one of our EarthCraft constructed homes, you are by no means “average” and can expect to save 30-45% on your energy bills from the get-go.
We can all use a refresher on some things we should be doing in our homes to help keep costs down and have less impact on our environment:
1. Turn Down the Heat
The EIA says projects that for every degree you lower your heat, you can cut your heating costs by as much as 5 percent.
2. Program the temperature
If you have a programmable thermostat – use it! If you have set some time perameters in the past, be sure to re-examine the settings when the weather changes.
3. Cut laundry costs
Wash clothes in cold water — they will last longer and still get clean while saving energy. Hang clothes to dry, either outside or on a line in a garage, bathroom or spare room. If you do use the clothes dryer, try to use an Energy Star certified model, and be sure to clean the lint filter before every use to maximize air circulation.
4. Check for drafts
Carefully inspect your home for drafty spots where cold air can enter, especially in older homes. The most common culprits are doors and windows. Install weather stripping and door sweeps to block drafts.
5. Use the sun
The sun is a great source of natural energy. Taking small steps such as opening the drapes to let the sun’s warmth in during the day, and closing them – or install insulating drapes – to keep heat in at night will make substantial differences in your heating bill. Leave lights off if sunlight provides enough light by which to read, shower, cook or eat.