Happy National Cut Your Energy Costs Day! Yes, it’s official. We now have a holiday for everything! Including increasing your home’s energy efficiency. Each year, on January 10th, we’re reminded of how much energy we waste. Experts estimate at least 30% of our monthly utility bills falls into this category. So, how can we reduce that number? Start with some of these tips:
1. Find & Fix Leaks
When it comes to both water and electricity. Plumbing leaks can be easier to spot thanks to the constant drip of water, but they’re not always visible. In those cases, it helps to look at your meter. Try looking at your measurements over the course of a couple hours when no one is using the plumbing. If you see any shift, it’s a good indication that a leak is present—somewhere.
You can have air leaks, too! These drafts drain your electricity by letting in cold air, even through the smallest spaces. Doors and windows are the primary culprits, but sometimes caulk and weather stripping simply aren’t enough. Updating older siding and adding a house wrap during the process can drastically cut your energy costs. Just in time, too!
2. Lower Your Thermostat
Okay, so this isn’t a new suggestion, but it’s still a good one. Experts recommend keeping your thermostat at 68 degrees during winter. This allows you and your family to remain comfortable while still being energy efficient. If you’re used to warmer temperatures than that, try reducing it gradually by one degree each day. That will allow everyone to acclimate.
Have you considered installing smart home technology? We have more options today than ever before—one in every price range! Some popular systems, like Nest, actually learn your daily habits so they can turn the thermostat up or down for you to manage separate heating zones. This allows you to save energy and money without even trying!
Did you know your water heater has a thermostat, too? Most come preset at 140 degrees Fahrenheit, but they don’t need to be that high according to the US Department of Energy. 120 degrees should be sufficient for cleaning, washing, and showering all year long. Plus, you likely won’t even notice the change! It’s just an easy way to celebrate National Cut Your Energy Costs Day.
There are many more ways to reduce your energy usage, not just today, but all year long. You can find additional tips here and on the Department of Energy’s website. If you need help with bigger home exterior projects, contact Schaefer Siding & Exteriors today!