Reducing your energy and water use is a smart way to save money, especially since there are many free and easy ways to do it. Here are some tips that you can implement right away:
- Turn things off when you’re not using them: TVs, lights, etc. Turn them off when you leave the room. Even when something is asleep or in standby mode, it is drawing energy. Consider unplugging it. When leaving for extended periods of time, turn off heaters and air conditioners.
- Use thermostat setbacks: At night or when you’re not at home, lower your thermostat so the house doesn’t keep heating to the same temperature.
- Control the sun: Letting sunlight in during the winter helps to heat the house, and blocking sunlight during the summer helps to keep the house cool. Use blinds and curtains for this.
- Wash only full loads: When using your dishwasher or washing machine, run only full loads to reduce the number of times you’re using the machines. Try washing with cold water.
- Control your sprinklers: In many areas of the country, sprinklers can be turned off in the winter. Watering during hot parts of the day can be a waste because the sun will simply evaporate the water.
- Air dry everything: Dishes can be left out to dry, and clothes can be hung up.
- Use smaller appliances: If your toaster oven or microwave will get the job done, don’t use the oven.
- Lower the temperature on your water heater: Keeping water at a lower temperature is easier for the heater.
- Close the flue damper in fireplaces: It lets air in when its open.
- Keep the fridge and freezer stocked: You can even use bottles of water. They add to thermal mass, which slows down how quickly you lose cold air when you open the door.
While you’re at it, also consider doing some easy house maintenance!