Blog Posts

Dec 13

Home Renovations

The bare and dark space of a basement often poses a challenge for basement remodels. Don't let the lack of ideas and design intimidate you.... Learn more

Nov 07

All About Weather Shield Windows

Reasons to consider Weather Shield With hundreds of window and door manufacturers to choose from, it can be difficult to distinguish one company... Learn more

Sep 25

All About James Hardie Products

Choosing a home siding can be a daunting process. It's a whole new arena to become familiar with and it's not uncommon to have questions. Here... Learn more

Home Energy Tips

Saving energy around the house is good for your wallet, good for you and the family, and good for the environment. But energy conservation around the house is more complex than just using less electricity, because anything you do at home that requires water or fossil fuels is also energy intensive. There's also the point of caring for our planet and its environment—but if everyone does their part and saves energy, then that problem would be significantly reduced. Cutting energy use around the house involves reducing electricity and water use, being smart about when and how you use energy, preventing energy loss, and choosing appliances and fixtures that will help you save energy.

Home energy tips

Wash clothes in cold water to save $63 a year.

Install a programmable thermostat to save up to 10% on cooling and heating costs.

Use your window shades. Close blinds on the sunny side in summer to keep out the hot sun and open them in winter to bring in warm rays.

Turn off all lights, appliances and electronics not in use. A power strip can help turn off multiple items at once. (Sometimes the simplest things are really effective!)

Change to new and improved light bulbs. Reduce energy use from about a third to as much as 80% with today’s increasing number of energy-efficient halogen incandescent, CFLs and LEDs.

Look for the Energy Star label, the government’s symbol of energy efficiency, on a wide range of consumer products to save up to 30% on related electricity bills.

Use low-flow faucets and shower heads to save on water bills.

Clean or change filters regularly. A dirty furnace or A/C filter will slow down air flow and make the system work harder to keep you warm or cool.

Reduce water heater temperature to 130° F to save energy and money on heating water; and wrap the water storage tank in a specially-designed “blanket” to retain the heat.

Seal air leaks and properly insulate to save up to 20% on heating and cooling bills, while also increasing home comfort.

Install energy-efficient windows. A large percentage of your energy may be lost through bad windows and doors. Older windows are often very drafty, and this means your furnace and air conditioner have to work harder to heat or cool your house, and this means using more energy. When it’s time to update your windows, look into more energy-efficient double- or triple-paned ones that will help reduce your energy use.

In many places, there are tax credits available for homeowners who upgrade to energy-efficient windows, so look into government programs where you live.

Use smaller appliances for smaller cooking jobs. Using your oven is great if you're cooking an entire meal. But if you're just roasting a few vegetables, making toast, or making another small meal, use food-specific appliances that use less energy.

For instance:

Use a toaster to make toast

Use a toaster oven to cook, roast or bake small portions

Use a steamer or rice cooker to steam rice and vegetables

Use a frying pan to sauté or stir fry instead of baking or roasting

Use a microwave to bake, steam, and boil all sorts of foods

Hang clothes to dry. It takes a lot of power to run a clothes dryer, so you can save energy by hanging your clothes on a line or tower outside instead. Not only will this save energy, but it will also give your clothes that clean, fresh air smell.

Avoid drying clothes inside, as this can create moisture and mold in the house.

Use rechargeable batteries only. While it may seem counterintuitive, recharging a battery is a great way to save energy compared to buying a new one. It requires a lot more energy to produce a new battery than it does to recharge one that’s already made, so when your current batteries die, replace them with rechargeable ones.

Rechargeable batteries are also cheaper in the long run, because you don’t have to keep buying them.

Rechargeable batteries are also better for the environment, because they don’t go to the landfill after each use.