Is conserving energy your New Year’s resolution? If so, then there’s no better time than the present to get started! Below, we’re sharing 22 ideas for big and small ways to make your home more energy-efficient.
1. Use ceiling fans year-round.
To cool a room, the ceiling fan should rotate counterclockwise at a high speed. To warm a room, the fan should turn clockwise at a low speed.
2. Upgrade to a smart thermostat.
Smart thermostats aren’t just programmable: they can provide you with personalized energy-saving tips. With geofencing capabilities, they can also automatically adjust to your “at home” or “away” preferences without you having to lift a finger.
3. Be strategic with window treatments.
Opt for thicker curtains and blinds in rooms where you need more temperature control. Insulated cellular shades, Roman shades, and thermal curtains are always “energy-smart” choices.
4. Improve your air ducts.
Leaky air ducts could be responsible for a substantial amount of energy loss in your home, according to ENERGY STAR. Hire a trusted HVAC contractor to seal your ductwork. If your ductwork is many decades old, replacing it may be your best option.
5. Flush your water heater.
Flushing the tank annually helps prevent sediment buildup that reduces your water heater’s performance.
6. Schedule maintenance for your HVAC system.
Annual maintenance turns back the clock for your heating and cooling system, helping it maintain peak efficiency and avoid expensive breakdowns that result from neglect.
7. Air-seal your windows and exterior doors.
Over time, the caulk and weatherstripping around doors and windows can wear off, allowing your home to lose and gain heat when you don’t want it to. By air-sealing these areas, you’ll have more even temperatures throughout your home.
8. Insulate your water heater tank.
Insulating your water heater tank makes its job of heating up water (and keeping it hot) a lot easier, especially if it’s located in the garage or an outdoor utility closet.
9. Replace incandescent bulbs with LEDs.
Not only are LEDs much more energy-efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs, but they also don’t get hot, and they last many times longer.
10. Vow not to walk away from the shower.
How many times have we all turned on the shower, only to walk away and get distracted by something for way too long while waiting for the water to heat up? Make a promise to yourself not to walk away from your shower this year!
11. Don’t leave electronics plugged in.
Did you know that electronics still use power even when they’re in “standby mode?” Plug your electronics into surge protectors. That way you can turn off several devices at once with the flick of one switch.
12. Switch to a tankless water heater.
Tankless water heaters are generally more efficient than tank water heaters because they only use energy to heat water at the moment you need hot water.
13. Install a zoning system.
Sick of some parts of your home always being much hotter or colder than others? A zoning system solves this problem by allowing you to direct hot or cold air from your central HVAC system to whichever “zone” in your home needs it.
14. If you own a dishwasher, use it.
It’s true: running full loads in a relatively new dishwasher uses less energy and water than washing the equivalent number of dishes by hand!
15. Replace HVAC equipment over 20 years old.
Furnaces last 15 to 20 years, and air conditioners and heat pump last around 5 years less than that on average. If your HVAC equipment has crossed the 20-year mark, it’s probably costing you a fortune in unnecessary energy bills due to outdated technology and lost efficiency.
16. Never close your air vents.
Closing your air vents actually makes your HVAC system less efficient. For maximum efficiency, make sure none of your system’s vents or blocked or closed.
17. Change your air filter frequently.
The air filter protects your HVAC system but can also hinder it if it gets too dirty. Make sure to clean your filter every 30 days if it’s reusable and to replace it every 30 to 60 days if it’s disposable.
18. Invest in table fans and floor fans for summer.
Fans can help you feel cooler using the “wind chill” effect, and they only need a fraction of the energy that your AC does.
19. Update your home’s insulation.
If you live in an older home, it’s likely that its insulation is out of date, especially in the attic. New insulation can have a substantial impact on your comfort and energy bills.
20. Opt for ENERGY STAR-rated products.
Need a new TV or maybe a new kitchen appliance? Buying a product with the ENERGY STAR label will ensure you get a device with measurable energy savings.
21. Install lights with sensors.
Whether they’re outside for security purposes or installed in a busy family room, lights with sensors help conserve energy by making sure the lights are only on when you need them to be.
22. Paint your walls light colors.
Pale walls reflect light, brightening your living space and reducing your dependence on extra lighting.
At Monarch Home Services, we are your one-stop shop for all your HVAC needs in Fresno, Bakersfield, and Visalia. Call us today at (661) 271-6099!