Some people think that changing their power consumption habits can change their entire lifestyle. This is simply an outmoded belief, as you can do simple changes right now—or commit to them starting today. Some electrical contractors in Salt Lake City might recommend these changes:
Review Your HVAC System
Your heating and cooling units comprise almost 48% of your annual energy bills, according to the Department of Energy. This means making sure that they work at top efficiency is paramount. Have your units checked by a certified professional at least twice a year, once in spring and once in fall, so that they can work at optimum levels when the seasons that demand them most (summer and winter) arrive. Otherwise, do the work yourself and change your air filters regularly. Air filters get dirty and clogged over time, which impacts their performance, leading to the unit working harder to maintain your desired temperature.
Your Thermostat Is Your Friend
Similarly, investing in a programmable thermostat is one of the easiest ways to lower your energy consumption. The way it works is that you can save on heating and cooling when no one needs it. You can program it to turn on only when there are people at home. Take it even further and use a smart thermostat instead. These are next-gen thermostats that you can control via the internet using your phone or another mobile device. Some devices are full of features that will be useful depending on your usage.
The location of your home’s thermostat can also affect its performance. Read the manufacturer’s installation instructions to prevent “ghost readings” or furnace or air conditioner cycling. Place thermostats far from direct sunlight, wind sources (such as fans), windows, doors, or skylights.
An interior that’s not in the mercy of outside temperatures can be cooled (or heated) more efficiently—or you might not even need them at all. Do this by beefing up your insulation. Seal cracks, gaps, and leaks and invest in siding with an insulating layer. Inspect your roofing insulation, too; if they’re wet (likely due to leaks or condensation), the insulation is worthless and needs to be replaced.
Mind Your Appliances
Appliances and electronics now account for more than half of your energy bills, what with the proliferation of gadgets. Here are some ways to save power:
- Unplug appliances when they’re not in use, especially when you’re not around. Appliances still consume a little amount of energy even when they’re turned off as long as they’re plugged into an outlet.
- Replace appliances that are at least 10 years old. Newer appliances are more energy-efficient (compared LED lights to CFLs or fluorescents). If possible, choose ENERGY STAR-rated devices.
- Use natural lighting when possible to rely less on artificial lighting.
- Use curtains or drapes to control the amount of light and heat that enters your home.
- Never leave your computer on all day long. If this is not possible, use a laptop instead, put it to sleep, and unplug it.
Saving energy is a win-win situation for anybody. You not only do your part in conserving strained natural resources but also make your wallet breathe easily.