Tips On Saving Money And Energy At Home

Conserving energy is a pretty hot topic these days for two reasons, first electricity costs are continuing to rise and electric bill are unmanageable for some families.  The second reason is the impact on the environment and the desire to reduce your carbon footprint.  Here are some tips on saving money and energy at home.

  1. Use Smart Switches

Using motion sensors and timers can help you avoid wasting energy.  Think of all the times you or someone in your family has left the room and left the light on.  You can save an estimated $100 per year just by putting in motion sensors.  Timers work on the same principal,  whether it is for your lights or to turn your heat on, setting a timer is better than having it run continuously.

  1. Buy Some Groceries

Most people are unaware that your fridge actually runs better when it is full.  Even if you’re the consummate bachelor who eats out every night and never cooks at home you can fill your fridge with water bottles.  They can occupy space and keep the cool air in.  When buying flowers, don’t put them in the fridge because they take up too much empty space! Vacuum the coils a couple of times a year so they run efficiently.  These few steps can give you a savings of up to $60 per year.  If you have an older fridge upgrading to Energy Star can reduce your energy by 40%.

  1. Unplug Anything You’re Not Using

Here is a fun fact, almost 75% of your electricity is being consumed by things you aren’t using.  If you have something plugged in it is using power.  While it isn’t much, take a moment to think of all the things in your home right now that are plugged in but not being uses.  Turn off your Air Conditioning when you’re no longer using it. The microwave, countless lamps, televisions, computers and the list goes on.  Unplug all of it.  You will save yourself a fortune!

  1. Change the Filter in the Furnace

This is something that countless homeowners forget to do, make it a part of your spring cleaning routine.  Dirty furnace filters make your furnace work even harder to keep your home warm.  If the forced air and heat has to get through a dirty filter to get to you means higher energy bills.  On top of that it shortens the life of your furnace and send dust, dirt and debris into the air of your home.

These are just some of the ways you can save energy costs, you can also consider upgrading your appliances, and insulating your house to save even more on your energy costs.  Consult with an electrician for more ideas.

Renewable Energy

Why is renewable energy so important?  The major sources of energy we use right now are fossil fuels, and while if we woke up tomorrow and all the fossil fuels were gone the earth would eventually replenish them.  That will take thousands of years however so fossil fuels are considered a non-renewable source of energy.

What makes up renewable energy then?

These are just some possibilities when it comes to renewable energy, let’s look at them closer.

Wind Energy

Wind energy is becoming more popular and wind turbines are being built all over the world.  The only real drawback to wind energy is that it is unreliable and sporadic.  The wind doesn’t blow continuously anywhere.

Geothermal Energy

Geothermal energy comes from the heat that is generated by the earth and then we convert that energy into something usable.  This is renewable as long as the earth still has a molten core.  Here is a video showing how geothermal energy works.

Nuclear Energy

Nuclear energy is technically not renewable, since matter is destroyed in order to produce energy, however the supply of nuclear material is pretty much endless. Combine that with the fact that splitting the atom of fissionable material produces an incredible amount of energy.   The problem lies in the fact that it also gives off radiation which is deadly.  Nuclear meltdowns can destroy the environment for thousands of years, think of Chernobyl .  While nuclear energy is an incredible source of energy it is not without risks.

Hydroelectric Energy

Hydroelectricity creates energy by harnessing the power of water.  Dams are built and they capture the energy of the water, water is used to turn turbines as it is released.  However good hydroelectric power is building dams still disturbs the local ecosystems.  It is still a better alternative to fossil fuels but we have to be very careful in how hydroelectricity and the dams are built and managed.

Solar

This is probably one of the best sources of renewable energy and the energy for every living thing already  comes from the sun.  Using photovoltaic cells we can take energy from the sun and convert into usable power.

We are still a long way from moving away from fossil fuels.  Electric companies are moving toward greener energy sources and our electricity moves over to renewable energy there are still millions of cars on the road running on fossil fuels.  Gradually we have transitioned to hybrid and more fuel efficient vehicles but it may be years yet before we rid ourselves of our dependence on fossil fuels.

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