If you’re a lover of interior design, then it’s easy to spend so much time worrying about what you want for the home that you don’t think about what you need. However, if you’re looking at your energy bills and you’re seeing numbers much higher than you should be, it’s time to look at what to do and where to invest to take control of your utility expenses once more.
Make sure you have good habits
How many appliances do you leave on at night, when you leave home, or even when you leave the room? Phantom energy, also known as the equally spooktacular vampire energy, is the term used to refer to how much energy you use to power appliances that aren’t in use and are actually one of the biggest sources of wasted energy found in any home. Make sure you turn off appliances when you leave the room and have a check over the whole home before you leave it empty so you’re not leaving a house full of energy phantoms behind you.
Check your HVAC
Our heating, air conditioners, and ventilation all lose efficiency over time. Wear and tear is a factor, as is the potential for malfunctions. One tiny issue in your heating system could lead to major increases in energy bills. Once a year, you should have a heating technician come to check your system, just as you should have an air conditioning engineer do the same for your AC. Preferably, you want them checked before winter for the heating and before summer for the AC, as that’s when you’re likely to rely on those systems most.
Stop letting the heat out (or is it in?)
The home should serve as a protective barrier against all the dangers of the outside world, including the climate. As such, it should insulate you from the cold as well as the heat. If it doesn’t, your AC and heating systems will be working all the harder to try and adjust the climate indoors. Check your home for air leaks and take a closer look at your doors and windows. If they’re well past their best, it might be time to look at an energy efficient window replacement. In the winter, it will stop the heat from escaping, just as it will stop the heat from coming in during the summer.
Say goodbye to some old friends
It’s not just your windows that might benefit from a replacement. Older appliances such as ovens, TVs, refrigerators, microwaves and the like could all be costing you more in energy usage than they should. It’s an investment to replace them with energy efficient appliances, but one that will eventually pay off in lower energy bills.
Most importantly, make sure you’re actually looking at your bills, especially if you have it setup for automatic payments. It’s very easy to lose track of common household expenses such as utilities, only for them to come back and bite in the rear. Don’t get caught off guard.