It’s easy to fall into mindless habits when it comes to how you go through your day and care for your Baltimore, Maryland home. If you’re not careful, your regular routines may create unnecessary expenses. Step back and take a careful look at how you manage your home, and you may find unexpected areas where you can eliminate expenses and save a significant chunk of money.
1. Inefficient Heating and Cooling Settings
If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, you’re probably paying too much for inefficient heating and cooling. It’s time-consuming and tedious to adjust the thermostat settings several times a day, but a programmable thermostat will do the job for you. If you do have a programmable thermostat, make sure the settings coincide with your schedule. Use less heating and cooling during the day when the house is empty and at night when your family is inactive.
Try turning your thermostat up or down a few degrees for added savings. You may find that your comfort levels are more flexible than you originally assumed.
2. Cable Television
With today’s extensive marketplace of streaming services, any amount that you pay for cable television is more than necessary. Services like Netflix and Amazon Prime allow you to watch dozens of movies and television shows for less than $10 a month. Hulu offers many popular network shows the day after they air on television. Affordable options like these are prompting many homeowners to cut the cable cord entirely in favor of cheaper alternatives.
3. Household Cleaning Products
You don’t need to pay a premium for fancy household cleaning products when common kitchen products will do the job for many tasks. Stay away from expensive garbage disposal cleansers and use baking soda and vinegar instead. Run some ice through the disposal to clear out stuck-on food, and toss half a lemon in for a fresh scent when you’re done.
Vinegar is also a natural disinfectant that works well for wiping down counters. Lemon juice and salt are as effective as many bathroom cleaners on dingy grout, and olive oil makes an excellent furniture polish.
4. Electricity Bills
Performing a home energy audit may reveal many areas where you can cut down on your electricity costs. Energy Star certified appliances offer more efficient operation for everything from your refrigerator to your air conditioner. You can also minimize your power usage with smaller changes. Plug electronics into power strips that can be turned off at night. Items like your television and computer can continue to use energy even after they’re turned off, but this strategy will eliminate the power drain.
5. Water Expenses
When was the last time you really thought about how you use water? If you’re not paying attention to your habits, you could be using far more water than necessary. Stop flushing single tissues, and you can save five to seven gallons of water per flush. Weigh a couple water bottles down with pebbles or sand and fill them to the top with water. Place these in your toilet tank to save around ten gallons of water a day. Small upgrades like a low-flow showerhead or aerator on your faucets will also reduce your water usage.
6. HVAC Repairs
If you’re paying for regular HVAC repairs, it’s time to consider a different approach to managing your home comfort. Frequent repairs could indicate that it’s time for a replacement. While this requires an up-front investment, you’ll quickly recoup the cost of the unit as you eliminate repairs from your budget. You can also avoid expensive repairs by investing in preventive maintenance before things go wrong.
You should schedule a maintenance visit for your air conditioner in early spring and one for your furnace in early fall. These tune-ups will help keep your system in peak condition, limiting the number of repairs you need throughout the year. If you sign up for a preventive maintenance plan, you’ll enjoy additional cost savings like free replacement parts and a credit toward replacement equipment.
If you’re ready to start saving on your home comfort, contact Griffith Energy Services at (888) 474-3391 to set up an HVAC maintenance plan, explore your options for an energy-efficient heating and cooling system, or install a programmable thermostat.
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