There is an increasing interest in green living as people are becoming more aware of environmental issues, and let’s be honest, the amount of money they are wasting by not educating themselves on being more green and energy-efficient. There are a variety of fixes to be more judicious with energy, with some being more extensive and expensive, while others are easy and cost little to no money.
So, if you don’t have the budget for big fixes and renovations, no worries. There are lots of things you can do to get things moving in the right direction, and remember that lots of little changes can add up to big-time results and savings.
Change Your Bulbs
Did you know compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) or light-emitting diodes(LED) lights use 75 percent less energy than standard incandescent? The former can last up to 10 times longer than standard bulbs and the latter may last three to five times as long as CFLs.
Skip Pre-rinsing of Your Dishes
This might seem like something small, but can add up to big water savings. Don’t skip on scraping the food off dishes before loading them into the washer, but you don’t really need the pre-rinse. Did you know this little change can save up to 6,500 gallons of water yearly?
Change Furnace Filters Regularly
Dirty air filters make your furnace work harder to keep your house warm, and the harder it works the more energy it wastes. It is good to get a new filter every two to three months.
Insulating Water Heaters and Pipes
Insulating your pipes and water heater can greatly enhance energy efficiency by helping to retain heat. Rubber or foam-pipe insulation will keep cold pipes from sweating in the warmer months, and reduce heat loss in the winter.
Seal Up Doors and Windows
This is one of the least expensive strategies for making your home more energy-efficient, and provides some of the greatest benefit. All those little cracks and openings in the doors and windows add up to big time energy loss. It is the same as if you opened a giant hole in the wall. Get door sweeps for the front and back doors. Get rid of old caulk and apply a fresh seal.
Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances
This is one of the pricier strategies, but in the long run can offer great financial benefit. In fact, according to the Colorado Springs CO- based family owned business Brown’s Heating, certain purchases can qualify you for substantial tax credits. Talk to your provider for more specifics.
Change Your Toilet and Shower heads
Toilets account for up to 40 percent of water use in the average home. A low-flow toilet can reduce water use up to 9,000 gallons a year. A traditional shower head uses about five gallons per minute, while the low-flow counterpart uses 1.5. Low-flow shower heads may conjure up images of weak pressure and gritty hair that is still covered in shampoo residue, but they have greatly improved over the years.