January 10 is Cut Your Energy Costs Day and at Financial Knowledge, we are all about cutting costs in order to increasing savings. There are a number of ways you can easily and cheaply cut energy costs without sacrificing comfort.
Your parents were right – turning off the lights as you leave a room and closing a door will help with your energy bill. In addition, opening the blinds or curtains during the day in winter to get natural light and possibly heat, then closing them to trap that heat at night. During the summer, leave the windows covered if you are in an area of extreme heat – it will help cool down your home during the day. It helps, no matter the weather, to leave a window open a little occasionally to air out a room, get a little cross breeze in summer and reduce mold and condensation in winter.
Turning down the thermostat is also a free, easy to do way to cut energy costs. Set the temperature lower during winter and enjoy wearing extra layers. Finally, you will get to use that lovely sweater your Aunt made for you five years ago. Turn off the heat, or down dramatically when you leave your home for the day. In summer, set the thermostat higher so the air conditioning does not power on when you are gone.
Run your dishwasher only when fully loaded. It is amazing how one more dish can always fit in. Do the same with your washing machine – run it fully loaded without over loading it. Choose the appropriate water temperature for the load as not everything should be washed in hot water. Along that idea, if your hot water is scalding, consider turning down the temperature on the hot water heater. A few degrees will not make a difference to your comfort but will to your energy bill.
When driving, make sure your tires are inflated to the correct air pressure and you are not carrying a lot of extra weight around in the car. Both these will help your mileage per gallon. Next time you buy a new vehicle, consider one that gets better gas mileage than your current vehicle.
A little money can be spent on insulating around windows that open. Foam tape is easily applied around the windows and will cut down on any draughts on poorly fitting windows. In addition, adding a door sweep to an exterior door can stop draughts. A rolled up towel can be used for interior doors.
There are many more ways to save on energy costs but some of them, such as installing solar panels, are not cheap or easy ways and may take a while to see benefits.
Start with the little things and soon work up. The monthly savings can go towards your financial goals. Happy National Cut Your Energy Costs Day.