Today's energy-efficient water heaters can quickly pay for themselves with the energy they save. For most people, keeping the temperature set at 120 degrees provides enough hot water. To save even more, consider adding a water heater blanket, which is a layer of insulation that wraps around the hot water tank. It helps keep more heat and the heating element doesn't have to run as often.
Pipes that supply hot water to faucets, showers, and appliances in your home can drain power. Depending on how far the water has to travel, you could lose a lot of heat. Adding insulation to hot water pipes can increase water temperature by 2°F to 4°F. In addition to supplying warmer water, insulated pipes mean you don't have to run the water that long, waiting for hot water to shower.
Open curtains on sunny winter days, keep them closed in summer. Insulating curtains will help even more. We've all heard that switching to Energy Star appliances can reduce our energy and water consumption by 10-50%, but not everyone has the money to replace their appliances. So, whether your rentals include utilities or not, we've created tips that both you and your tenant can start using today at a low cost or no cost.
Your refrigerator may come with different temperature settings, but some of these cooler settings aren't necessary when trying to keep food cold and safe to eat. Keep your fridge between 35 and 41°F (2-5°C) and the freezer at -0.4°F (-18°C). A little lower and you're just wasting energy. Some domestic hot water systems heat to more than 140°F (60°C), which is completely unnecessary and hot enough to seriously burn a child and adult.
Instead, set your water heater to 120°F (49°C). Typically, this will reduce water consumption by 30% and water heating bills by 30-40%. Not only will doing this reduce your water bills due to lower consumption, but your water heating bills will also decrease due to lower demand. It's likely that we've all heard this advice.
However, it's worth repeating, as it's the easiest and most direct way to save on energy costs. It can feel good to keep the house warm so you don't have to warm up so much. But the U.S. Department of Energy says you could save up to 10% annually in heating costs by lowering the thermostat from 7 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit for eight hours a day.
You can also see what credits are available in your area for solar energy and if you qualify, such as the 26% tax credit. Solar panels also have the popular benefit of allowing you to sell surplus energy to utility companies, if your local utility is involved. You can save 1 to 3 percent on your bill for every degree you lower the thermostat. But you don't have to quickly freeze your house.
Worthington suggests slowly lowering the temperature to find a level you're comfortable with. Ovens and ventilation grilles need the necessary maintenance checks to operate efficiently. Proper functionality will help reduce energy consumption and, in turn, save you a lot of money. Sometimes you need something as simple as checking or changing filters and making sure you're using clean filters that are right for your system.
Consulting a furnace or HVAC professional is your best bet for ongoing advice on how to keep your oven in excellent condition. You can save money on your heating bill if you lower your thermostat when you're sleeping or out and about. A programmable thermostat can do this automatically. The Department of Energy estimates that you can save up to 10 percent per year on heating by lowering the thermostat 7 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit from its normal setting for eight hours a day.
Heating your home is usually your biggest energy expenditure, which also means that's where you can save the most. Direct Energy's Usage Insights tool shows you where your electricity consumption is going and how you could save. When you save electricity in winter, you do the environment a favor and, at the same time, lower your electricity bill. Your utility company may be able to help you calculate your bills, using historical address information.
Apartment tenants can also make arrangements that will help them keep thermostats lower and save on heating bills. If you live in a northern state with harsh winters, investing in ways to save can reduce energy consumption. Once you know how efficient you really are, it's time to get serious about reducing that utility bill. Utility costs may vary across the country due to variations in the price of basic services and state regulations.
If using all the solar energy in your home isn't a time or money commitment you can make right now, you could even look for other eco-friendly ways to save on your overall electricity and heating expenses. It's important to save electricity in winter to lower your electricity bills, not to mention reduce your carbon footprint. Lowering the thermostat from 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day can save 10% on heating and cooling. Speaking of dishwashers, if you have an Energy Star dishwasher, you're likely to save hot water by using it every night instead of washing dishes by hand several times a day.