Home Energy Saving Tips - Things that don't cost much.

Easy Ideas to Save Energy

There are certainly some major projects you can do to save money on energy. But, what are the easiest things to do?

With the average home usage on the pie charts shown on my page average home energy usage in mind, here are my top home energy saving tips.

  1. Go low flow. Install low flow devices in your home, especially on hot water using devices. Water can be expensive and heating the water is almost always expensive.

    I pay approximately $0.03 per gallon for water (I get it trucked in so it is fairly expensive) and approximately $0.02 per gallon to heat the water to shower temperature.

    Install a low flow shower head. I use a 1.5 GPM showerhead, so a 5 minute shower uses 7.5 gallons (depending on pressure). This is about $0.37 per 5 minute shower.

    Switching to a 1.5 GPM showerhead from a 3 GPM showerhead will save you approximately $0.37 per 5 minute shower. For a family this could lead to approximately $810 per year savings ($2.22 for 30 minutes per day x 365 days). This is one of the best energy tips for the home.

    Note that a bathtub typically holds approximately 40-50 gallons (more with larger tubs). At my rates, this is over $2 per bath.

  2. Washing Machine - Use Cold Water. Using cold water should save you approximately $0.25 per load depending on electricity or natural gas prices. This equates to approximately $100 savings per year. ($0.25 x 8 loads per week x 52 weeks)
  3. Replace the old light bulbs. Replace your incandescent light bulbs with CFB (compact fluorescent bulbs). A typical CFB will use 13 Watts compared to 60 Watts for a typical incandescent bulbs with the same light output. This is because more energy is converted to light energy versus heat.

    The 47 Watt difference translates to a $41 per year savings for a bulb that is on all year (47W x 24 hours x 365 days / 1000 x $0.10 per kWh). Of course, you don't leave your lights on all year. So for example an average house might have 25 light bulbs used for an average of 4 hours per day. The savings with CFBs would be approximately $171 per year (25 bulbs x 47W x 4 hours x 365 days / 1000 x $0.10 per kWh). Once again, this is one of the best energy saving tips home related

  4. Hot Water Heater Temperature. One of the top users of energy in your home is the hot water heater. Turn the temperature down to the lowest level you find acceptable (if your shower is cold turn it back up). The energy saved here is the amount of energy you lose while you are not using the hot water. Your hot water tank it insulated but it still loses energy. Of course, if you have a tankless water heater, this will not be an issue.
  5. Programmable Thermostats. Upgrade to a programmable thermostat to set you night temperature lower in the winter and higher in the summer. This has the potential to save you 5-15% on your heating bill.
  6. Clean or Replace your Furnace Filters. Just replacing your filter regularly can save you a lot of money heating and cooling your home.
  7. Upgrade to High Efficiency Appliances. While this is certainly easy, it is not always cost effective. You should measure the usage of you current unit and do a little research if you go this route. Likely, the payback of upgrading is not great.

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