Energy is one of the highest costs of homeownership. Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to ensure that you save energy—and, in turn, save money and the environment.
Here are 9 ways to make your home more energy efficient:
Lower Your Thermostat
Save energy in the winter by lowering your thermostat when you’re asleep or away from home. This slows down heat loss and saves energy while your system works a lot less hard. This same concept can be applied in the summertime when you set the thermostat to a higher temperature. In addition to saving money, the habit of adjusting your thermostat will also save you a chunk of change on your next heating and cooling bill.
Check Your AC Unit
Make sure your HVAC system has a high seasonal energy efficiency rating (SEER). A higher rating is better for efficiency and will help you manage cooling and heating costs. At Kelmscott Park, we’ve installed 15 SEER condensing units for cooling, which offers up to 50% higher efficiency than a standard air conditioner. These save a lot of money and require less energy to function.
Then Check Your Gas Furnace
Let’s face it: come wintertime, your gas furnace is your best friend. That’s why it’s imperative that you have an up-to-date furnace that’s in good condition for those brutal winter months. Look for high efficiency gas furnaces noted by “AFUE,” which stands for annual fuel utilization efficiency. At Kelmscott Park, we have 96% AFUE gas furnaces that are designed to conserve energy and save you money.
Compost Old Food
Rather than tossing food scraps in the trash, keep them in a container or in a pile outside. The food decomposes into organic material, which can then be added to soil to help plants grow. The process keeps materials out of landfills and creates an all-natural fertilizer for all of your plant and landscaping needs. For a list of items that can be composted, check out this article from The Spruce.
Install Low-Flow Showerheads and Toilets
According to HGTV, “showers are responsible for up to 30% of typical household water use.” Low-flow shower heads mitigate the amount of water wasted, and make a big impact when it comes to conserve water and energy. They also lower annual heating costs and reduce your monthly water bill. Low-flow toilets also have added energy efficiency benefits, and are included in every home at Kelmscott Park.
Turn Off the Water
Speaking of water, did you know that you could save up to 8 gallons of water by turning off the tap when you brush your teeth in the morning and at night? Imagine how much that could add up over time! Conserving water is an essential way of saving energy, so be sure to turn off those running faucets and fix those leaky pipes.
Keep It Cold
According to the Energy Department, water heating accounts for the second largest energy expense in your home. Washers use 90% of energy to heat the water and 10% to actually run the motor. You can use less energy by washing your clothes with cold water and, when possible, air drying them instead of using the dryer.
Unplug Unused Chargers and Devices
Avoid “energy vampires” by unplugging all unused cell phone and battery charges when they aren’t in use. Energy vampires are responsible for approximately 10% of your energy bill, so unplug your chargers, devices, electronics, and appliances when you can.
Use ENERGY STAR® Products
ENERGY STAR® products use less energy than regular products, and meet strict criteria set by the US Energy Protection Agency or the US Department of Energy. From air conditioners to refrigerators to washers and dryers, there are a wide range of ENERGY STAR® products to choose from that are made to help you save energy. We’ve included several optional Energy Star appliances at Kelmscott Park, including washer/dryer packages, refrigerators and
For more information on Kelmscott Park, visit www.kelmscottpark.com.