Lowering your energy bill is a great goal. Not only will it save you energy, and money, but it shows that you are a good steward for the environment. With some modest actions and some normal household maintenance you can save a lot of energy.
Where Do I Begin?
Your heating and air system generally use the most energy in your home. Taking steps to make them more efficient will help out with energy use but don’t forget about other appliances, such as dishwashers and dryers.
In addition to appliances you can take other steps to save energy. The Jacksonville FL area has a fairly large temperature range over the course of a year and energy savings can be hard during the entire period.
- Heating and air tune-ups – Since your heating and cooling systems use large amounts of energy it’s always good to have them tuned-up and running efficiently. Before cooling season and again before heating season are great times to do this. Keeping your units in top working order will save energy and may help them last longer, saving even more.
- Filters – One of the most overlooked areas of your heating and cooling system is the filter. The filter will help keep your units running smoother. Dirty filters waste energy, overwork the equipment and compromises indoor air quality. They only cost a few dollars but can save considerable amounts of energy when used properly.
- Small appliances – Use smaller appliances to cook with, especially during summer. Toaster ovens, electric skillets and slow cookers use much less energy than your range and big oven. Make use of your microwave also.
- Refrigerator – Your fridge has to run a lot. It’s also one of the most important devices in your home. Keep it clean. Make sure the coils on the unit are clean along with the fins, motor and evaporator pan. Throw away items inside the refrigerator that just sit there and are never used. It just takes more energy to keep them cool.
- Dishwasher – Run full loads in the dishwasher. Use the shortest cycle that will clean your dishes. Consider opening the door a crack to let the dishes dry instead of allowing the unit to do so.
- Washer – Just as with the dishwasher run only full loads in the washing machine. If you can adjust the water level do so if you have less than full loads.
- Dryer – Don’t dry clothes excessively. This only wastes energy and is tough on the fabrics. A dryer with an electric sensor that shuts off when clothes are dry saves energy. Again, full loads only.
- Lighting – Use energy efficient lighting. Replace old incandescent bulbs with more friendly fluorescent lighting. Turn lights off when you leave the room. Use free daytime lighting if you can.
- Water heaters – Consider a tankless water heater to save energy. Tank-type water heaters are notorious energy wasters and they lose efficiency quickly as they age. Water softeners are a big help to your water heater as they keep mineral deposits and sediment in the system to a minimum. Turn the heat down a few degrees to save energy. You probably will never notice the difference. You may need a blanket on your water heater, especially on the first three feet or so of the unit.
- Fans – The use of fans with your heating and cooling system helps save energy. Using a fan during the summer will circulate cool air helping your feel cooler. You can raise your thermostat a few degrees. Fans can help during the winter also, but don’t forget to reverse their direction. Whole house fans work great also. If you have a large enough space you can install a HVLS (High Volume, Low Speed) fan and save even more energy than a regular fan.
- Office equipment – Many of these devices use energy even in their sleep mode. Consider plugging them into a power strip and turning the power to the strip off when not in use.
- Water conservation – Be aware of any leaks or excess water use that may occur in your home. Water saving faucets and shower heads work great. Saving water generally saves energy and is certainly good for the planet.
Small Action, Big Savings
The tips listed above will get you on your way to some nice energy savings. No single one of them may save significant amounts of energy but taken together they add up to less energy use and a lower energy bill. Save energy and save yourself some money!
If you are looking for more information on how to save energy or are considering going green with your air conditioning system, call Snyder Heating and Air Conditioning. We can provide more tips and are happy to schedule a free estimate before installing a “green” system.