By KINGSOLAR | Published:
Save Energy, Save Money
There are many actions people can take to reduce the energy consumptions of their homes. For Southern & Central Kansas families who want to produce as much of their own energy as possible, this is an important step before going solar. Energy efficiency can save money in the long run because it enables you to install a smaller solar system. Give these tips a try to cut your energy bills:
1. Weatherize Your Home
Is your home drafty in the winter, or do you have uneven temperatures throughout your home? If so, weatherizing your home may help, especially in our Southern Kansas climate. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), most homes are not properly insulated or air sealed. Installing weather strips for doors, air sealing all gaps and cracks, and upgrading insulation can make a big difference on your energy bills, while boosting your home value.
2. Solar Thermal Maintenance
Many of the solar hot water (solar thermal) systems that were installed in the 1970s and 1980s continue to operate to this day. If you have a system, maintaining it can continue saving you money on heating and water heating.
3. Use Window Treatments
Blinds and curtains can help keep heat out during the summer, lowering your cooling bill. Close the curtains, especially in south-facing windows during daylight hours. Also close east-facing in the morning and west-facing window treatments in the afternoon.
During Kansas winters, keeping curtains and blinds open during the day will help warm your home with the sun. This can be amplified by removing screens in south-facing windows during the heating season, because it allows more sunlight to enter your home.
4. Efficient Lighting
Do you still use some incandescent bulbs in your lighting fixtures? Whenever possible, swap these out for energy-efficient fluorescent or LED bulbs, prioritizing fixtures that are on longer during the day. Installing sensors on outside, bathroom and closet lights can also cut your lighting bill.
5. Home Energy Audit
If you want to gain greater insight into how your Central Kansas home uses energy, an energy audit is a great way to get started. Someone can walk through your home, explaining how you can make various aspects of your home more efficient, including major appliances, the heating and cooling system, building envelope, lighting, etc.
6. Use Smart Power Strips
Many appliances in your home may not fully turn off, but rather remain in “standby” mode. Televisions, computer printers, game consoles, and DVD players commonly suck power continuously, even when not in use. Using smart power strips for your computer and entertainment center in particular can cut energy use by turning off power to these appliances when not in use.
7. Heating & Cooling System Upkeep
Regularly maintaining your HVAC system saves energy and, therefore, money. When airflow is restricted in the unit, it uses more energy to compensate. Make sure your filters are changed as needed and have your equipment serviced regularly to keep it operating well.