Everyone wants to lower their utility bills, but many people are misguided by television shows and professionals trying to sell their own goods. With the best intentions, many homeowners waste money instead of saving it.
After many years in the trades I have found many quick and easy steps to saving money, most will not even cost the homeowner any money. Here is a list of things most homeowners can do to save on utilities.
1. Check the temperature on your water heater, this can usually be turned down to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Many homes have their water set at 120 degrees, by lowering the temperature 10 degrees you will see real savings on your utility bill.
2. Adjust the temperature setting on your thermostat at least 1 degree, 2-3 degrees is even better. You will probably not notice the difference in the temperature, but there will be lower utility consumption.
3. Where possible switch all incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent bulbs, there is a real savings because of less energy consumption. Also these bulbs are now affordable for just about everyone’s budget.
4. With a tube of caulk you should seal any cracks or gaps around windows, doors, siding, in your foundation and anywhere you find them. For the $3.00 cost of the tube of caulk you can save much more money in energy savings while keeping your home more comfortable.
5. Take a walk around your home and check all off your plumbing inside and out. Look for any leaks at your faucets, outside hose bibs or joints. Even a small drip will waste water and cost you money. Always try to stop a water leak in your home.
6. Whenever a light or appliance is not needed, shut it off. People like to keep their lights burning and appliances on. Simply turn it off when you are done and you will save money.
7. During cooling season try to keep direct sunlight from heating your home. Use blinds or shades, have trees provide cover for a window, whatever you can do to keep sunlight from making your house warmer will be good for your utilities. In the heating season allow sunlight to heat your home. Keep shades and drapes open, the sun will aid in providing heat.
8. When the weather doesn’t warrant your heat or cooling systems staying on full time you should regulate the temperature in your home by opening and closing windows and screens and using ceiling fans. Using a simple fan or the free circulation of air will keep the temperature comfortable without having to use your utilities.
There are many simple steps that we can take to keep our utility usage down without having to sacrifice comfort. Any homeowner can take a walk around their home and find small ways to keep their energy consumption down, all it takes is a small amount of time and some common sense.