If you’d like to rein in your monthly household budget, why not start to reduce energy costs. Unlike some other household expenses, there are ways to cut your energy budget painlessly, such as:
- Pulling the plugs. Many battery chargers for handheld devices continue to draw power even when they’re not connected to their device, and any television that starts immediately after you turn it on draws power, even when off. The Energy Star program estimates that vampire and standby power consumption account for 10 billion kilowatts of wasted energy annually in the U.S., and the average household unnecessarily spends $100 a year by leaving devices plugged in.
- Turning down the water heater to 120 degrees F. Heating water is second to conditioning your home for driving up energy consumption. You should also drain a few gallons of water from the water heater annually to remove sediment that builds at the bottom of the tank. It will use less energy and last longer.
- Switching your lighting to LED or CFL bulbs if you haven’t already. You’ll get more life out of CFL bulbs if you avoid placing them in rooms where the light is frequently turned off. Opt for LEDs in bathrooms or closets instead.
- Checking the air filter for your HVAC system monthly, and changing it when it looks clogged or dirty. A dirty filter slows airflow through the system and makes it run longer. Since heating and cooling accounts for half of energy consumed at home, keeping the filter clean will reduce energy costs considerably. It’s also a good idea to have the equipment serviced annually to make sure it runs as efficiently as possible.
- Air drying your dishes by turning off the dry cycle on the dishwasher. At the end of its cycle, the dishes are hot enough to dry themselves, especially if you open the door slightly.
For more ways to reduce energy costs with your HVAC system and water heater, please contact us at Griffith Energy Services, Inc. We’ve provided quality services for homeowners in the Baltimore area for more than a century.
Written by Kevin Spain