With the growing costs of utilities, it only makes sense that homeowners would try to find ways to reduce their utility bills. Many are discovering that replacing appliances, performing minor repairs and making simple additions to their homes can help them cut costs. Here are the top five ways that people have used to lower the costs of utilities in their homes.
Homes are filled with cracks that leak air in and out all season long. To reduce energy costs, fill any cracks or openings with caulk or weather-stripping. Pay close attention to door and window frames because these are the most common areas of energy loss. Attics and crawlspaces should have adequate insulation to further assist with lowering energy bills.
The use of ceiling fans in a home can also assist in lowering the costs of energy by moving cool or warm air throughout the home efficiently. In warm months, a ceiling fan can significantly reduce the use of air conditioning units by drawing warm air from above and mixing it with cooler air below. The opposite happens during the cooler months when the rotation of the ceiling fan is reversed. Instead of warm air being pushed downward, the cool air is drawn upwards to mix with the rising heat to keep an even room temperature.
The addition of shutters can dress up a home and reduce heating and cooling costs. For warmer months, many homeowners have shutters installed to keep light from penetrating into the interior of the home. This keeps the air conditioning from running as often and lowers the indoor temperature. During the cooler months, open windows allow light into the home, which can raise the interior temperature and eliminate the need to turn up the furnace. There is a clear link between the amount of light coming into the home and the temperature of the home.
Energy Star Appliances
Another way to lower energy costs is to buy Energy Star rated appliances. The upfront cost of these upgrades is often more than for standard appliances, but the long-term savings quickly make the replacements ideal for anyone who is trying to reduce their utility bills. The most common appliances replaced include washers, dryers, furnaces, refrigerators, and water heaters.
Shutting Down Items
Turning off electrical items throughout the home when away during the day or at night before going to bed can help lower your home’s power consumption. Fans, cable boxes and lights left on when no one is using them can add a noticeable amount to electric bills. In addition, changing light bulbs to a lower wattage or a more energy friendly version will help add to your savings.