Summer is nearly here and as Texans that means the scorching hot weather is, too! While using the air conditioner to the max is necessary in the Central Texas area, there are some things you can do to cut your energy bill and footprint this summer. Follow these energy-efficient tips to reduce your bills, while keeping your home cool:
Seal and Insulate
The cost of heating and cooling accounts for 45 percent of the average home’s energy bill. To cut down on this expense, seal all gaps and cracks around windows and doors and make sure your insulation meets or exceeds city code.
Buy ENERGY STAR Products
The ENERGY STAR label, placed on a wide range of consumer products, can save you up to 30 percent on your electricity bills. Look for this sticker when shopping for light fixtures, appliances, etc. These products may cost more up front, but they will pay for themselves over time.
Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs
Energy-efficient light bulbs not only last longer, but they also reduce your energy usage by about 30 to 80 percent. Energy-efficient options include halogen incandescent, CFLs and LEDs.
Get Tax Credits
By installing ENERGY STAR windows, skylights or storm doors, or adding insulation, weather stripping or caulk, you can receive up to $500 in tax credits.
Turn on Ceiling Fans
Set your temperature a few degrees higher and turn your fan on to spin in a counterclockwise direction to save as much as 40 percent on your cooling bills during the summer months.
Use Cold Water to Wash Clothes
You could save up to $63 a year by washing your clothes in cold water.
Install a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat can save you up to 10 percent on your heating and cooling bills.
Close the Blinds and Curtains
Close blinds and shades during the summer months to keep the hot sun rays out – keeping the home cooler – and open them in the winter to let in the warm rays.
Switch to Low-Flow Faucets & Showerheads
Save money on your water bill by installing low-flow faucets and showerheads in each bathroom of the home.
Unplug Electric Items Not in Use
Turn off all lights, appliances and electronics not in use. Not only will this save money on electricity, but it will likely also decrease the amount of heat released in your home.
To know where to start, hire a professional to complete an energy audit. This evaluation shows you where the inefficiencies and wasted energy are in your home. With this information in hand and these energy-efficient tips, you are well on your way to saving money and reducing your carbon footprint this summer.
Have questions? Reach out to our team anytime! We are always happy to lend a helping hand.