Smart Ways to Save on Energy Costs

As the weather warms up, many people will turn to their air conditioners for relief. This can lead to significantly higher energy costs -- there are few things more unpleasant than a "surprise" utility bill that's double or even triple what you were expecting. If you're looking to keep your utility costs and energy consumption in check, there are several things you can do.

Become More Energy Conscious

Just by thinking more about how you use water and energy will help you avoid wasting it. Consider this: when you don't think about wasting water, it's much easier to run the tap while brushing your teeth, take long showers, and be less thoughtful about running laundry loads. However, committing to being more thoughtful about the amount of water and energy that you use will cause you to pause, think, and act differently.

Use an Energy Calculator

It can be difficult to monitor just how much water, gas, and electricity you use each month, and many utility companies don't provide comprehensive data. Fortunately, there are several useful apps and websites that will provide information about your energy consumption. An example is the free website Savvy on Waste, which calculates that amount of water and energy that you use. It can also estimate the amount of gas and fuels that your home uses. Tools like this not only help you save money on utilities but also ensure a lower carbon footprint in your home.

Schedule a home energy audit to determine how much energy you are using and discover easy, affordable ways to save.

Install a Programmable Thermostat

There's no need to run your heating or cooling system when you're away from home, but few people want to return to a house that's uncomfortable just for the sake of saving money. This is where programmable thermostats come in and are not only great for maintaining the comfort of your home, but saving energy. Quality programmable thermostats can be found for less than $50, and you can recoup the investment through utility savings. Programmable thermostats also make managing your heating and cooling systems very convenient, and some come equipped with features such as WiFi capability and the ability to be managed via your PC, smartphone, or tablet.

By using these tips, you'll be on your way to lower utility costs and a more energy efficient home.

Another way to save energy and make your house look better is to have the roof professionally pressure washed. Algae and dirt buildup can retain heat, which means you are using more air conditioning. Plus, cleaning the roof can extend the life of the shingles.

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