Come January many of us are ready for a fresh start. Maybe we have just stepped on the scale after a month of holiday parties and treats, or our credit card and utility bills from the month of December have arrived and are making us wince. The new year is a time for new beginnings and resolutions. If you are looking to tighten up your finances this year, try making some energy efficient changes in your home to help you save money. Check out these energy efficient New Year’s Resolutions for inspiration.
Actually Turn the Lights Off
I’m sure your parents’ voices asking you to turn the lights off are still ringing in your ears. But, they were right. This year, make an effort to actually turn them off when you leave a room. According to Energy.gov, “Lighting makes up about 10 percent of home energy costs.” Therefore, it’s important to make an effort to turn them off when not in use.
If you haven’t already done so, make the switch from incandescent light bulbs to CFLs (compact fluorescent lights) or LEDs (light emitting diodes). Both kinds of lightbulbs offer energy and money savings, but LEDs have a longer life span and are more energy efficient.
Be Aware of Vampire Power
Vampire power refers to the power still being used by certain electronic devices when they are plugged into the outlet, even if they are not turned on. For example, did you know: “Over time, many microwaves and televisions actually consume more electricity during the hours they’re not in use than the times you’re actually using them…?” (Source: HowStuffWorks). Here are few common devices that can was you energy and money from vampire power: TVs, computers, things with a clock on them, cable boxes, and DVD players.
Make it one of your energy efficient New Year’s resolutions this year to turn off these devices when they are not in use.
Take Shorter Showers
This one probably isn’t news to you, but this year, actually try to do it. Home Water Works suggests a shower time of 5 minutes or less to save water. Try setting a timer the next time you are in the shower and see how close you can get to that 5 minute mark.
You can also install a low flow shower head to help with your water usage and lower your water bills this year.
Turn Down the Thermostat
It is cold outside, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it needs to feel like a tropical island inside. Turn down the thermostat a few degrees and throw on an extra layer. Once you see your utility bills, it will seem worth it. In general, Energy.gov recommends a daytime setting of 68 degrees and lowering it even more at night.
Here’s to a new year and to energy efficient New Year’s Resolutions! If you would like to learn more about saving energy this year, contact Flame!