Being energy efficient is one of the top home features to prioritize. Even when renting a home, it makes a big difference in the value of the contract. Annual savings can go past a thousand dollars in an energy efficient home, especially in hot and humid regions.
To get the most out of this feature, here are a few tips to make a home worthy of your investment.
Mind those windows!
This is one of the first things you should do when running the central air in your home. If the windows are open, then the central air has to work harder to maintain the set temperature. There is also the opposite effect of keeping windows closed and running the central air when the weather outside is perfectly fine. You have windows, so open them when the weather outside is nice. Knowing the appropriate time to close and open windows will always be a big help with the electric bill.
Unplug unused products
This is not always convenient, but is still something worth looking into. One of the easiest ways to be energy efficient and save money is to unplug devices that aren’t in use. This also works for appliances, as they use energy even when they’re off. If you have a vacation coming up, unplug all of the devices and appliances in your home. The difference in savings isn’t massive, but it will make a noticeable dent. Even when the device has a standby mode, it is still sucking energy from your home. With up to ten percent of all home electricity being sapped by plugged-in appliances, it is worth unplugging your most unused products.
What a dependable supplier brings to the table
Consumers are more likely to look at renewable energy as a necessity. That means the search for the right company will involve tons of research about methods, cost and features. With the market moving towards one-hundred percent renewable energy, what used to be a handful of companies is now many. green suppliers offer upfront incentives to bring homes up to current renewable energy standards. Beyond the promised cost savings, there are many local and country specific programs in place that push the idea of converting homes. That is one of the many benefits of choosing a supplier that closely follows government guidelines for green energy homes.
Upgrade to a smart thermostat
The days of the dumb thermostat are long gone. The first big upgrade came when wi-fi thermostats let you control the temperature from a portable device. But with the latest upgrade, the thermostat can now prevent unnecessary startups to maintain a specific temperature. Schedules can be set daily, weekly or based on your personal settings. Although none of these features are considered ‘new’, they are still much better than previous entries on older devices. Smart thermostats have their efficiency bumped up to a ten, and should not be overlooked in an energy efficient home.
Make sure the water heater is set
Setting your water heater too high or too low will cause it to work harder than it needs to. It should never be set higher than one-hundred twenty degrees Fahrenheit. The difference in energy usage is staggering, and can be as much as five percent per ten degrees lowered. Sometimes it is preferable to change the water heater completely, due to it being old and lacking energy efficiency. On older systems, you don’t even get a readout of the current temperature. This can make it difficult when trying to gauge whether it’s at the correct setting.
The heating and cooling system should be checked
Sometimes upgrades are unavoidable, and becomes necessary when making a home energy efficient. Bringing an older central air system up to date with new standards will cost more than replacing the unit outright. An appliance that big is tied to the foundation of the home, and will most likely point to other areas that need to be upgraded. When you feel the central air is pulling in more energy than it should, then get it checked out by a professional. Sometimes the problem can be resolved with regular maintenance and a minor upgrade. The easiest way to know this for sure is to check your electric bill differences during the summer and winter months.
A home built for energy efficiency still requires maintenance and common sense from its inhabitants. When you make the choice to save money by going green, it requires constant effort. The end reward is worth it, and can always be used to improve other projects in your life.