Usually this time of year, we are gearing up for a brisk fall season. As we are sure you have seen, the weather has been behaving rather strangely this year. With record highs and soon approaching lows, it is critical to get your house in shape so you can keep your utility bills in check. Here are a few simple home tips that can dramatically help you save on your home’s utilities:
1. Set Your Water Heater to 123 Degrees
- Usually, manufacturers setting is somewhere around 140F. If you don’t need your showers to be quite that hot (most don’t), this can save you around 10% on your monthly heating bills. Temperatures any hotter are a scalding hazard as well.
2. Get Energy Efficient Light Bulbs
- While it may seem difficult to invest in something as simple as light bulbs, lighting has come a long way over the last 35 years. For example, a 40-watt LED bulb uses about 85% less energy than a standard bulb — decreasing your lighting costs significantly over time. The bulbs are more expensive, but the savings far outweigh the initial bulb expense.
3. Take Control of Your Thermostat
- When it comes to saving on utilities and home costs, technology is your friend. Homeowners who use a programmable, “smart” thermostat can save hundreds, or even thousands over the course of a year by making sure that their home is always at an optimal temperature for comfort and savings. By avoiding cooling or heating an empty home to your comfort level, you can significantly impact your energy costs.
4. Simple Home Improvement
- Simple improvements such as adding insulation or weather stripping are very simple to do and will save you money when the weather is either hot or cool. Most hardware stores can guide even the most novice DIY’er in the right direction.
5. Understanding Peak Usage Hours
- Each utility company is different. Generally each has certain times of the day when power is used (and subsequently priced) at a premium. Contact your power company for more details – avoiding high usages tasks during peak hours can save you over the course of the year. Doing laundry or running the dishwasher are generally not time sensitive chores and by performing these tasks in non-peak times, the energy cost is significantly less.
We hope that you find these few tips helpful. Stay warm and enjoy your Autumn!
Remember to contact us for referrals if you need assistance finding a contractor to help with any improvements, need expert advice on your home. We’ve worked with many home services over the years and have put together a list of trusted service providers. And if you are thinking about selling your home, give a call for a free home evaluation.