There are plenty of reasons in 2020 for a homeowner to want to make their home more energy efficient. Doing so helps reduce the negative impact of fossil fuels on the environment, as well as significantly cutting down on energy bills.
At first, it may seem like the changes you make are going to cost a small fortune, and you may be concerned the investment is not worth it. However, you don’t have to turn your life around in order to make some beneficial, green changes to your home. Small improvements such as changing the light bulbs, replacing some appliances, and fixing some insulation issues are enough to start seeing positive changes when your next bills come.
Below are some of the easiest ways to upgrade your home and make it more energy efficient, without having to burn a hole in your wallet.
Replace Appliances with More Efficient Ones
If your appliances are more than 10 years old, they may not be as energy efficient as they once used to be. It’s not that they consume more energy than they used to — it’s just that today’s standards have changed and there are appliances on the market that consume much less energy than the ones made 10 or 15 years ago.
One of the best ways to cut down on your electrical bills is to change some appliances in the house with modern ones that promote energy efficiency. Some appliances you can consider replacing are your air conditioner, washing machine, fridge, and boiler. A small change, such as replacing the model you have with a new compact boiler, will significantly reduce your costs in the long term.
Consider a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat connected to your heating and cooling system will enhance efficiency both during the winter and summer. You can program it to reach a desired temperature during specific times of the day, ensuring you get an optimal climate for fewer costs.
One easy way to set up your smart thermostat is by taking into consideration when most members of the family are home. If, for example, everyone leaves at 8 AM and comes back at 5 PM, you can schedule the thermostat to keep a lower temperature when there is no one home, and slowly increase it to reach the optimal one before you get back home from work.
Improve Home Insulation
There is no exact answer to how much insulation a house needs, but if you have trouble reaching an optimal temperature in the house, it may be because energy slips away somehow. Most often, it happens because your attic needs an extra layer of insulation, or because your doors and windows need better sealing.
Physics teaches us that hot air raises, meaning your attic is going to be the first to benefit from improved insulation. Ask a professional to inspect the place and recommend which type of insulation to use. While you’re at it, consider checking windows and doors as well, and add an extra layer of sealing or consider replacing some of them if needed.
Replace Lights with Energy-Efficient Ones
This is perhaps one of the easiest and oldest tricks in the book, but it’s also one of the most efficient ones. Replacing all the bulbs in your house with LED ones will significantly lower your energy bills, plus they last for a very long time, saving you money changing bulbs every year.
To avoid having to turn on the lights at night to go to the bathroom or to get a glass of water, consider investing in some LED night lights as well. Some are activated by sensors that detect movements, while others are just dim lights that can be plugged in during the evening.
Consider Solar Panels
This is more of a costly investment, but if you really want to make your house more energy efficient, you have to consider solar panels. The initial investment is significant, but those who use them have seen significant benefits in the long run.
If you’re thinking about installing solar panels, remember that some states provide financial stimulus to help homeowners do this, so it’s worth checking out with your local government.