Money and Energy saving hacks for heating/cooling your home

There’s nothing more frustrating when trying to save money than getting your energy bill in the mail every month. There in your hand you hold the cold hard evidence of your kids leaving the door front open practically all winter long and the time your husband left the windows open when you were running the AC…for a week. Even the months when it comes and it’s fairly normal, it can be frustrating to be paying for cooling your home when it’s really that hot out to begin with and your house is just warm because there’s no trees to shade it. Whatever the reason, a high energy bill isn’t fun to deal with for you or your budget. If you’re looking to save money or trying to stick to a stricter budget, try some of these energy saving hacks to heat or cool your home and save money in the process.

  1. Keep the lights off in the Summer for Double the Savings.
We all know that you’re supposed to turn lights off when you leave a room in order to save on electricity, however, if you’re running your AC in the summer and leaving unnecessary lights on, you’re working against yourself—double time! The lights will artificially heat up the inside of your home, even by a few degrees, and kick that AC back on—costing you more money once again! Instead—take advantage of the added sunlight in the evenings and utilize the natural light afforded from outside. This way you’re saving on electricity and on your budget!
  1. Invest in a Draft Stopper.

This will be your new best friend year-round, regardless of the season or how hot or cold it is outside. What this does is stop drafts from coming in from under your entry door. This can be an issue with older entry doors that have begun to lag or ones that weren’t sealed or installed properly. You slide it under your door and the snug fit of the foam on both sides of the door keeps the draft from coming in and the air from getting out. This keeps your cool or warm air from escaping and keeps the cold or heat out of your home. The best part about this unique tool is that it’s actually very affordable. You can get one on amazon for less than 10 dollars. 

  1. Shop around for a high quality fan.

While you might be thinking “but that takes electricity!” and you’d be right, we are too, because if you’re running your AC all summer, chances are investing in a high quality fan will save you a lot of money in the long run. First, the key to this hack is getting a high-quality fan as usually cheap ones won’t be as energy efficient, won’t work as well, and will break before they pay for themselves in terms of your energy bill. However, by investing in a better quality of fan, they’ll suck-up a lot less energy than your AC, be powerful enough to cool your home to the temp you’d like, and last for years to come to continually provide you savings on your energy bill.

  1. Replace your lightbulbs.
While reducing your overall electricity use will serve you best, sometimes well, it’s the 21st century and you need your lamps! By switching to a more energy efficient bulb you can reduce the amount of heat the bulb gives off and the amount of energy your light consumes by switching to a bulb that’s a CFL or LED. These types of bulbs, over traditional ones, can save you 25-80% of the energy consumed by your lights. While these bulbs do tend to cost slightly more than traditional ones, they also last anywhere from 3 to 25 times longer than your average bulb, meaning you’re replacing them far less often and actually saving money in the long term. 
  1. Replace your appliances with more energy efficient ones.
While this may not apply, or be a possibility, for everyone, this hack can save you a lot of money in the long-term, even if replacing appliances can be expensive. Older appliances tend to be huge energy sucks (and thus money sucks) as technology has become more and more energy efficient. As a kind of double whammy for your energy bill, the older an appliance gets, the more energy it tends to use too. So while new appliances may cost you more upfront, chances are they’re save you thousands in the long-run, especially if you’re current appliances are extremely old. 
  1. Replace your drafty windows.
While you might be thinking—"wait—I thought this was an article with ways to save money—not spend it!”—you’d be right—it is. But do you want to save 2 dollars in a month or 240 dollars in a year? The number one cause of energy inefficiency in homes is inefficient doors and windows.  Even if your windows seals are holding up well, older windows usually don’t have the triple-pane glass technology that can really make a huge difference when it comes down to your energy bill. Replacing your windows or any part of the fenestration system in your home can be costly but it’s a price that will pay off in the long term. Most quality windows come with lifetime warranties and are good for 30 or more years, minimum! 

No matter the route you take to reduce your energy consumption (and your energy bill), you’ll likely see some improvement. Now if only you could get your kids to shut the door behind them when they enter or leave the house…that would really reduce that bill!

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