13 DIY Ways To Increase Your Home’s Efficiency
There are a number of benefits to increasing your home efficiency when it comes to your utility bills and your carbon footprint. It helps save the planet, preserves our resources, and is certainly easier on your bank account. Luckily, there are a number of ways that you and your family can increase your home efficiency without the help of others.
Turn off your lights.
Remember when you were little and your parents kept yelling at you to turn off the lights? They were doing that for a reason. Leaving the lights on in empty rooms or utilizing lights in the middle of the day uses unnecessary energy. Get your whole family in the habit of turning off a light when they leave the room and opt for natural light during the day.
Purchase Energy Star appliances.
Granted, all of our homes come with Energy Star appliances at the outset. As these get worn out, and you need to replace them, look for Energy Star appliances as replacements. From dishwashers to ceiling fans, there are a number of energy-efficient products to improve the efficiency of your home. Energy Star is a government-backed symbol of efficient energy products. Their symbol displayed on products makes it easy for you to choose the products that are both energy saving and good for the environment.
Unplug your chargers when no one is using them.
Between phones, laptops, eReaders, and tablets, we rely heavily on chargers to keep our electronics working. However, leaving chargers plugged in when you aren’t actually charging wastes a lot of unnecessary energy.
Plant shade trees and shrubs around your house.
“Treescaping” is strategic landscaping to help prevent your house from harsh wind and weather. Planting dense trees to the north, northwest, and west of your home will help serve as a windbreak. Furthermore, the foliage will provide shade during the summer that will prevent the sun from overheating the house.
Use compact fluorescent or LED light bulbs.
Incandescent light bulbs are the most common type of light bulb, but they are not energy saving. They emit head waves and don’t last for a long time. Luckily, there are two other options homeowners can choose:
- Compact fluorescent light (CSL) bulbs are affordable and use 20-percent of the electricity incandescent light bulbs.
- Additionally, there are LED lights that are extremely long lasting, and use a third of the energy of CSL bulbs.
Choose your window treatments wisely.
Window treatments can greatly enhance any room in your home. They add color and texture and can drastically help with the efficiency by keeping heat out during the summer and in during the winter. When you pick out your curtains or shades, be sure to look for window treatments that will help increase the efficiency of your home.
Opt for lighter paint colors.
Who knew that the color of your walls could affect your energy bill? Light paint colors reflect sunlight and heat whereas darker shades absorb it. Depending on where you live, the colors of your walls can affect how you set your thermostat.
Use lids on pots and pans when you cook.
It sounds simple, but using pots and pans when you cook can decrease the cooking time and amount of heat you need, thus increasing efficiency. It’s a simple habit that can cause a change over time.
Or invest in an InstaPot.
There are many benefits of pressure cookers, and many love how quickly they cook meals. Yet one benefit of pressure cooking is that it can actually save up to 70 percent of the energy necessary for typical cooking techniques.
Wait until you have a full load of laundry to do the washing.
The medium wash settings doesn’t actually save water or energy. You’re better off doing a full load of laundry; it’s more efficient.
Use cool settings when washing your clothes.
Switching your temperature setting even just from hot to warm can cut energy consumption by half. Imagine how much energy to save if you can switch to cool.
Put film on your windows.
Rather than replacing old or inefficient windows, you can invest in window film that will block infrared radiation during the summer and trap heat inside during the winter. The dual benefit of the film will help cut down your electricity bill year round.
In the interest of cutting down your electricity bill even more, make sure that your seals under doors and around attic entrances are molded effectively into place.
At Homestead Homes, we have been helping people design and build their dream, energy saving homes since 1995. We provide you with a road map and our expertise; and let you make all the decisions from there. We are currently building throughout the Midwest in Colorado, South Dakota, Nebraska, & Iowa. We would love to help you today in achieving your dream of building a home yourself. Contact us for more information!