Electricity is a necessity that plays a huge role in our lives. Whether it’s at our workplaces, shopping centers, school, or home, we all rely heavily on it. Unfortunately, many people take this utility for granted, not knowing that there are numerous towns worldwide with poor electricity infrastructures. Therefore, the fact that we rarely have power outages is quite impressive. So we have to do everything humanly possible to avoid overloading the power grid and avoid power outages.
That being said, electricity can be quite costly, which is why some homeowners have gone off the power grid. Going off the grid partially or fully can help you lower your electricity bills and carbon footprint. Solar energy is one of the cleanest sources of energy on the planet, and the fact that it’s free is a bonus. But, despite being free, there is nothing more disappointing than your batteries running low at night. So here are a few effective hacks that can help you lower your energy usage.
5 Effective Hacks to Save Energy
1. Choose Energy-Efficient Appliances
Even if you install UL-certified solar panels with a powerful and durable inverter, there is still a huge likelihood of your battery running out in the middle of the night if not used efficiently. Therefore, you should replace your current appliances with energy-efficient options. So make sure you select appliances with a great energy rating. The more stars it has, the higher the likelihood of saving energy and lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Energy-efficient appliances can also help lower the electricity bills of homeowners who are still connected to the power grid.
2. Manage the Ceiling Fans
Instead of keeping the air conditioner on in summer and winter, you can keep the room temperature comfortable using the ceiling fans. Ceiling fans use less energy than air conditioners. Remember, when the air from the fan blows downwards, it helps keep the house cool and comfortable in summer, which means that you can keep the air conditioning unit off during the hot summer afternoons and save some cash.
In winter, you can turn the fan’s direction and pull the colder air upwards, leaving the house warm. This hack is more effective in winter than summer, but it does help save energy and increase the lifeline of your air conditioners.
3. Insulate the Windows
Besides bringing natural light into your home, windows can also allow heat and cold to get into your home. During winter, the cold air gets into your home through your windows, and in summer, the heat does the same. And this can result in your air conditioner working extra hard to keep your home warm in winter or cool in summer.
Luckily, there are numerous ways you can insulate your windows and save energy. You can either cover the windows with blankets or plastic window covers. A reliable cover will never let too much heat into the house, but it will keep the cold and heat outside while stabilizing the room temperature. And this will lower your gas and electricity bills. If you have gone off the grid, insulating your windows will prevent the air conditioner from overusing your batteries at night. This will leave more energy to power the other appliances in the house.
4. Use LED Bulbs
Light bulbs, particularly incandescent bulbs, are the most energy-hungry devices in our homes. On their own, they don’t use too much energy, but when left on for about 24 hours every day, they can consume a lot of energy, leaving you with high electricity bills. Luckily, there are several hacks that can help you lower the amount of energy used by the bulbs in your home, and one of them is replacing all the incandescent bulbs in the house with LED bulbs. LED bulbs use less energy than incandescent bulbs throughout their lifetime.
Most LED bulbs can last for about 25,000 hours, while incandescent ones last for about 750 hours. Therefore, when you consider the number of incandescent bulbs you will have to purchase over the course of 25,000 hours, the price can be quite high. Plus, it costs about $40 to power an LED bulb and $240 to power incandescent bulbs for 25,000 hours. And if you multiply this by the number of bulbs in your home, you will realize how much energy and cash this hack can save you in the long run. Therefore, you can opt for LED bulbs and make sure you switch them off when you’re not around.
5. Wash Your Clothes Using Cold Water and Then Air-Dry Them
Doing your laundry by hand can be quite challenging; in fact, convincing people to stop using the washer as a means of saving energy can be very hard. So, instead of hand washing your clothes, you can start using cold water only when washing your clothes in the washer and air-drying them. After all, about 90% of the energy used by washers is used to heat the water; therefore, using cold water can save a lot of energy.
Once they are clean, you can put them on the clothing lines in the backyard and let them air dry for a few hours. Convincing people to stop using the dryer is easier than asking them to hand wash their clothes. Air drying your clothes removes the dryers from the equation, and this will save a lot of energy in return. After all, the spinning mechanism and heating elements in dryers use a lot of energy.
There are numerous hacks that can help you save energy and even lower your electricity bills. Unfortunately, none of these hacks can save you a lot of cash on their own. But if you combine the above hacks and monitor numerous obvious issues like switching the lights off when leaving the room and unplugging all the appliances when not being used, you can save some cash every month. But the most crucial factor when it comes to reducing your energy consumption is consistency. If you are going to implement the above hacks, make sure you keep at it; after all, it won’t count if you only use them once or twice every month.
About The Author: Kristen Chapple is editor-in-chief at yourenergyblog.com. You’ll often find her doing research about different sources of renewable energy and reliable ways for sustainable living. She loves to write about almost anything that is under the umbrella of our environment and is always tinkering with the latest technology that could help our planet.
Photo by Daniele Franchi on Unsplash
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