Going into the new year is a big step forward—the opportunities seem endless and we’re all more motivated to make changes to better ourselves. One change that will better you, your home, and the environment, is committing to making your home more energy efficient. In the Sherman Oaks area especially, creating an energy efficiency home is easier than it may be in areas with harsh winters.
Below are six relatively simple changes you can make to your home and life this year to drastically reduce the amount of energy you use day-to-day. By making the changes to create an energy efficient home in Sherman Oaks, you’ll help the environment and save money at the same time.
Lower Your Thermostat or Invest in a Smart Thermostat
Adopt the habit of lowering the temperature on your thermostat while you and your family are away from home. The U.S. Department of Energy suggests keeping your home at 60 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and turning it up to 68 degrees Fahrenheit at night when more people are likely to be home. Reducing the amount of heating your home goes through during the day (when no one tends to be home to feel it) will reduce the energy your home uses.
Another option is to invest in a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats can adjust themselves to your pre-set times and temperatures so you don’t have to worry about whether you forgot to turn the air off when you left the house or coming home to an empty home in the evenings.
Install Low-Flow Showerheads
Did you know the average household can use up to 64 gallons of water a day? Cut back on your water usage and save yourself energy and money. An easy way to do this is to install low-flow showerheads in your bathrooms. Showerheads that were installed prior to 1992 sometimes have a flow rate of 5.5 gallons per minute (gpm). Newer, more efficient showerheads have a flow rate of 2.5 gpm. Low-flow showerheads come in two different styles—laminar-flow and aerating showerheads.
Laminar-flow showerheads create individual streams of water and aerating showerheads mix air into the water, which creates a misting spray. Both options will reduce the amount of water your family uses daily for showering, which will lower your energy usage.
Turn Off Unnecessary Water
Water heating is the second largest energy expense in your home! Whether it’s from leaky faucets or leaving the sink running while you wash the dishes or brush your teeth, running water can waste thousands of gallons of water throughout the year.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, one leaky faucet can waste up to 1,661 gallons of water a year. This new year, make the resolution to turn off the water while you brush your teeth and to fix all leaky faucets.
Seal All Windows
Weatherstripping can be a cost-efficient way to save you money and energy. Weatherstripping is used to seal windows from leaking air into or out of the home, which prevents you from spending a ton of money on heating or cooling costs. In fact, if you live in an older home, you can save up to 20% on your heating and cooling bills when you air seal your home.
Usually, when choosing the correct weatherstripping your home requires, you’ll need to have found any air leaks and assessed your ventilation needs to ensure you’re getting the air quality you want in your home. For more information about choosing the correct weatherstripping, visit The Department of Energy’s guide.
Replace Incandescent Bulbs
Switching from your incandescent bulbs to a more energy efficient CFL or LED lightbulb will save you money and energy. LED light bulbs use ⅙ of the energy that incandescent bulbs do and last anywhere from 5-8 times longer than your typical halogen bulb.
In addition to the money and energy that they save, LED lights have more capabilities when it comes to any home smart technology you may have. LED lights can be programmed to work with a dimmer switch, which will allow you to get as much or as little light as you want in a room. Replacing halogen or incandescent light bulbs, even just in the most used lamps or lights in your home will save your lights from using more energy than they need to.
Energy Management System
An Energy Management System (EMS) typically uses smart energy meters, sensors, and other devices that measure energy usage, and sends the collected data to an application or other systems for the operator to view it. An energy management system doesn’t have the capability to reduce energy use on its own. Rather, by using the metrics provided by the range of technology and measurements, the owner of the system can adjust their home settings to fit the preset benchmarks they prefer.
Pros 360 can help you install a customized energy management system in your home that gives you remote access to your lights, appliances, and other electronics as necessary. We can even set up an energy saving mode to help you reduce running costs while you’re away.
Start the new year off right with the commitment to making your home as energy efficient as possible. Pros 360 can help you decide on the right kind of energy management system for your home as well as answer any of your home performance questions. Give us a call today to start controlling your energy consumption!