What are the Top 5 Energy Zapping Habits in the Summer?
You may not realize it, but a lot of energy is used day in and day out, from charging your smartphone to washing the laundry. The less energy you can use, the better off the environment will be as well as your checkbook. By being proactive about your energy use, you can reduce your usage by as much as 25 percent!
There are many different ways people tend to waste energy and don’t even realize it. Let’s take a look at five of them so you can start making the necessary changes to save money on your energy bill this summer.
#1: Using Hot Water for Your Laundry
Summer often means you have more laundry to wash. From traveling to playing outdoors, laundry will pile up. It is recommended to avoid using hot water when washing laundry, unless just absolutely necessary. You can reduce your energy usage in half by using warm water instead. Cut your energy savings even more by using cold water to wash your clothes.
#2: Failing to Consider Energy Use While Cooking
Summer is prime time for entertaining, which means you may find yourself spending more time in the kitchen. Unfortunately, this can also result in increased energy usage. To ensure you get the most out of the energy you’re using, keep your appliances clean and cover pots and pans while in use. Ensure your refrigerator and freezer are both set to the appropriate temperature, and when possible, cook outside to prevent the build-up of heat in the home.
#3: Forgetting to Clean or Replace Your HVAC Filters
Your heating and air conditioning system is equipped with air filters that need to be cleaned and/or replaced on a regular basis to ensure the system works properly. These air filters capture airborne particles like dirt, dust, and pet dander. Over time, they can clog up, causing your HVAC system to work overtime to bring in fresh air and keep your home cool. Ideally, replace your HVAC filters every three months.
#4: Overlooking Household Thermostats
When you think of a household thermostat, the first thing that comes to mind is the thermostat for your heating and air conditioning system. Since heating and cooling tend to account for almost half of the energy used in a home, it makes sense to figure out ways to reduce unnecessary cooling and heating.
The best approach to this is with the installation of a programmable thermostat. Programmable thermostats are designed to be incredibly energy efficient, and they can “learn” your actions and preferred temperature. Further, these smart thermostats can default to the energy-saving mode when you’re not home.
Aside from the HVAC thermostat, it is important to consider the water heater thermostat. More often than not, the temperature of household water heaters is set too high. Generally, water heaters are set at 140 degrees, but it is recommended to drop that to 120 degrees for optimal efficiency. The temperature can be dropped even more, and with every 10 degrees lowered, your energy bill benefits from a three to five percent savings.
#5: Using Excess Water
The warmer temperatures of summer make you want to be in the cool water. However, this can lead to poor water usage habits. So, during the summer, try to remain mindful of how much water you are using inside and outside.
For starters, take shorter showers. This will not only reduce your water usage but your energy usage as well. Consider installing a drip irrigation system to water your lawn, plants, and flowers, which will help reduce water waste. When you wash laundry or dishes, make sure you have a full load. This saves water and electricity as well.
Contact Comfort Systems for an HVAC Inspection
Electricity is a necessary means to live a comfortable life. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to go overboard with it. It is possible to change your high-energy using habits to create a more sustainable living environment without sacrificing your day-to-day life. Give the aforementioned tips a try to save energy use and money. If your system is due for an inspection or annual maintenance, contact Comfort Systems to schedule an appointment.