5 Tips For Making Your Lifestyle More Energy Efficient
Energy efficiency is a popular buzzword these days. Part of that is to help conserve the earth's resources. However, making your home and lifestyle efficient also helps reduce utility costs. Make a few changes in your house and your living to promote energy efficiency.
Alter your Housekeeping Patterns
Certain activities, such as cooking and drying clothes, produce heat. Alter your housekeeping schedule depending on the season. For example, cook and run the dryer during the prime hours in winter so you don't have to run the heater as much. However, in the summertime, run appliances in the coolest hours, and cook outdoors as much as possible. This helps minimize how much you have to run the air conditioner.
Apply Window Films
Trying to cool your home in the summertime can be one of the biggest drains on your budget. A main culprit is the sun streaming in the windows. You can help mitigate this problem by having residential window films from a company like Solar Busters applied to your existing windows. These films refract the heat back out but allow filtered light into your home. You can select clear, light or subtle tinting depending on how much you want to preserve the view. Window films can be part of your energy efficiency plan if you especially focus on south-facing windows. As a bonus, these films help prevent fading of your furniture and carpeting as well as reduce the glare on televisions or computers.
Check the Window Panes
While you're attending to the windows anyway, have a look at the window frames. Depending on the frame material, damaged frames could be letting heat and cool out. Vinyl, aluminum and composite frames can buckle over time, while wooden frames can crack or rot. Seal and repair any issues – depending on the level of damage, it may be necessary to replace some of the windows.
Insulate your Water Heater
As Better Homes and Gardens points out, heating water is the third biggest utility expense in your home. Therefore, the magazine recommends insulating your water heater with a blanket made especially for the purpose. These insulation blankets are made of vinyl lined with fiberglass. Wrapping your water heater in one helps reduce the loss of standby heat, thus lowering the heating cost.
Install Occupancy Sensors
Another big energy drain is lighting. Consider installing occupancy sensors in your home to reduce lighting costs. These sensors track movement. When there hasn't been any movement for a period of time, they automatically turn the lights off. You can also run them with dimmers to further reduce the amount of lighting used.
Make over you house with upgrades such a window films and occupancy sensors to help make your lifestyle more energy efficient.