To go green or not to go green, that is the question. Saving energy equals saving money. This is quickly becoming a bigger and bigger topic these days as most people blame the government for not doing enough about it. Yes, the government should spend more money on research and development in alternative fuels. However, the real blame is on you. There are hundreds of ways to do your part. I will give you just a few that we found to be easy, inexpensive and in return will save you money.
By changing the light bulbs in your house to compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) you can save about $45 in electricity cost per light bulb. The average home in has roughly 15 active light bulbs. If homeowners were to change every light in their houses to CFL bulbs, they would save about $675 on electricity costs during the life of the light bulbs.
Shading can save up to 40% of cooling costs. Planting trees in strategic areas of your yard will not only increase the value of your home but will also save about $100 – $250 a year in energy costs. Homeowners will benefit the most from planting trees on the west and south sides of their houses. You can also call your local energy provider and they will often send an expert out to help you coordinate your energy saving efforts. Usually for free! Putting up drapes makes the house look better and blocks out a lot of heat in the summer and keeps the heat in during winter.
These experts will also help you with finding the heat sources in your house. They will pin point where exactly you are producing the most heat which may entail that your AC will run longer. For example, placing a lamp by the television causes two heat sources to be next to each other, which generates more heat. Turning televisions, VCRs, and DVD players off, not just leaving them on standby, makes a significant difference in how much you will pay on your next utility bill.
Turning your computer off overnight and during other times it is not in use, can also help save energy.
Thinking of buying a new washing machine? If you replace a washing machine that is older than 1994, you will save up to $110 a year on your utility bill. When you buy an appliance, Energy Star approved, that item can save you up to 50% than on non Energy Star approved appliances. All new washing machines come standard with the Energy Star and can be purchased for less than $1000. These washers will not only conserve energy but will also conserve water as well.
Other ways to conserve water is by changing your shower head. For an investment of $10 or less you can save $50 to $75 per year on water bills and $20 to $50 more per year on energy bills (depending on your current shower head and utility rates). Every new shower head should pay for itself within the first year.
Do you like money? I gave you only a few of the many ways to reduce your monthly bills. What have you done to help out the environment?