1. How Irrigating!
irrigating irritating, but you’re actually charged twice a month for water usage… once for water that flows in, and once for the water that goes back out as sewage. That literally IS money going down the drain! To cut back on this double expense, be more watchful of how much water you pump through the faucet or flush down the toilet. Another way to save on outgoing water is to install an irrigation system for your yard. Although it’ll cost a couple hundred dollars upfront, the irrigation system will help cut back on wasted water and will save money in the long run.
2. Flip ’em Off!
Sounds so simple, but leaving electronics on at night happens more often than we’d like to admit. Just leaving your cable box plugged in 24/7 adds nearly $18 of unnecessary expenses alone per year. Imagine how much more money you could save by turning other devices off at night. Go ahead… Flip ’em off!
3. What A Hot Idea!
Many water heaters are pre-set to temperatures that we often don’t like to use in our showers and baths. Drop the fixed temperature to 120 degrees or lower to save between $40-$60 annually. That is a hot idea!
4. Filtered Thoughts
Purchasing reusable air filters will cost you a bit more at the store, but the expense is well worth it once it’s time to change out the filters. Rather than going back to the store to spend more money on new filters, simply hose off the reusable one and reinstall. Now that’s something to breathe easy about!
5. Step On A Crack…
Don’t break your back with the wasted energy that seeps out of window and door cracks! Instead, use inexpensive expanding foam or caulk available at hardware stores to seal off cracks in areas where air typically escapes.
6. Star Student
Not all appliances are created equal! In recent years the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy have partnered up to create Energy Star, a group that identifies energy-efficient products. Like all the best students, Energy Star-approved appliances earn star ratings to indicate their level of efficiency to consumers. Be sure to purchase these all star products the next time you need new appliances.
7. Say No To Plugs
Unfortunately, just turning electronics off isn’t enough to stop energy use. Energy lost to electronics that are plugged in but not turned on is called “phantom energy” and can account for about 15% of your total energy bill. It’ll take a little extra time, but do your wallet a favor and just say no to unused plugs.
8. Dump the Dryer
Using the dryer adds an additional $110 to your electric bill each year. Dump the dryer and opt for a just-as-effective indoor clothes line instead. Lowes has a variety of affordable options to choose from.
9. Educate Yourself
Do your research and honestly evaluate how you and your family can cut back on energy use. Set goals for how you’ll use the money saved and create charts or graphs to help keep you motivated in your pursuits. Sun Run provides a great visual learning tool for ways to save on energy use in the home.
10. Recruit the Kids
After you’ve educated yourself, get everyone in the family involved! Energy Star has a great interactive website for kids that helps them see what they can do to save energy around the house. You can also use books and apps to help motivate your kids to be like their literary friends such as the Lorax.