Electricity generation has a substantial impact on many aspects of our environment including our water, land, and air. At present, approximately 40 percent of the total energy consumption of the U.S. is used towards generating electricity according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). While it is of the utmost importance to conserve energy as much as possible year-round, it becomes considerably easier during summer when the weather is warm. There are a number of simple yet effective strategies that you can employ to reduce your energy consumption and reduce your carbon footprint extensively…
Turn down your water heater
Water heating, on average, accounts for up to 18% of all the energy consumed in a home. As the temperature increases outside, the temperature on the water heater can be adjusted according to save electricity. According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, a water heater should be turned down to below 120 degrees Fahrenheit to conserve energy and save money as well. The amount of energy used on heating water can further be reduced by doing the laundry in cold water and turning down the thermostat on your dishwasher. Switching to cold water for washing and rinsing clothes can save a household in the region of $200 every year.
Keep your air conditioner well-maintained
One of the most effective ways to save energy during summer is to ensure that you adhere to a regular maintenance schedule for your air conditioner (AC). An average central AC can use anywhere between 3,000 to 5,000 watts of electricity for approximately 9 hours of use on a hot day. If it is not properly maintained, this energy usage can increase drastically. After a long, cold winter of inactivity chances are your unit is in desperate need of a good clean. Apart from replacing the filters and cleaning out the condenser, you also need to check the coolant lines that run from the evaporator to the condenser outside. A well-maintained air conditioning unit will not only use significantly less energy, which is great news for the environment but also cool your living areas down more efficiently.
Consider alternative lighting options
Did you know that more than 75% of the energy emitted by incandescent light bulbs is in the form of heat? This can make your already-warm home feel even stuffier. Where possible, make use of LEDs or compact fluorescent lights that operate at lower temperatures and are also substantially better for the environment. Apart from emitting less heat and using less power, these light bulbs also typically last a lot longer which will end up saving you money in the long run as well. Although changing your light bulbs can benefit the environment, making use of natural light as much as possible can boost your energy-saving efforts even further.
Seal up any air leaks
The excessive use of energy for cooling purposes can have a very dire effect on the environment. If you can prevent hot air from leaking into your home can expect to save as much as 30% on your total energy bill. This can be achieved by effectively sealing any cracks and openings that can let hot air in, and cool air out. Caulk and weatherstripping can seal windows and doors effectually without costing a fortune. Other ways to prevent hot air from entering the house include cover your kitchen exhaust fan when it is not in use and sealing all possible air leaks around the chimney, furnace, and water heater vents.
In order to preserve our environment, it is of vital importance to reduce our energy consumption by as much as possible. By employing the strategies mentioned above, energy usage can be reduced to a large extent now that summer is here.