How much energy and water does your home use every month? With the average West Coast household spending around $90 per month on energy alone, it can cost far more than you expect to use more energy and water than you need.
Luckily, there are a wide range of ways to reduce your energy and water usage and lower the amount you spend every month, as well as improve the environment by using fewer resources.
Whether you’d like to lower your monthly energy and water bills or simply reduce your home’s environmental impact, use these five simple techniques to lower your resource consumption and live a greener lifestyle.
Replace old appliances with newer, more efficient models
The older your home’s appliances are, the more likely it is they use far more energy than they need to. Many older appliances were designed and built before efficiency become a major priority.
This means that older ovens, televisions, water heaters, air conditioners and other appliances often use significantly more energy to perform the same task than their newer, more efficient alternatives.
The same is true of water – many older washing machines, dishwashers and other wet appliances use more water to complete the same task as a newer, more energy efficient machine.
If you seem to use more energy or water per month than your peers, old appliances could be the reason. Replace your old appliances with newer, more efficient models to reduce your energy and water consumption and lower your monthly bills.
Change your habits to knock out excessive consumption
While old, inefficient appliances can play a major role in your energy consumption, your personal habits can often have a greater impact. Even the most energy efficient appliances will fail to save much power if your habits are energy inefficient.
A great way to reduce your energy and water consumption is by changing your bad energy and water habits. From running taps to leaving doors open during winter, a great deal of your energy consumption could be due to ineffective personal habits.
Instead of focusing solely on appliances to save energy, think about how changing your habits could reduce your resource consumption. Switch off lights when they aren’t in use, turn off taps and take a more careful approach to using resources.
Turn appliances and electronic devices off when not in use
Do you leave lights on while you’re out of the house? Have you ever switched on the air conditioner and forgotten to turn it off? One of the easiest ways to use far more water and energy than you need to is to keep devices on when they aren’t in use.
Reduce your energy and water consumption by turning off unused devices, from the air conditioner to your television. The savings for each item might be small, but once they’re aggregated, the amount of energy and water you save can be significant.
Use energy efficient materials and lighting systems
Appliances aren’t the only things that can increase your energy and water usage. If your home uses energy inefficient building materials such as low quality insulation or artificial lighting, you probably use more energy than you need to.
The same is true of water. If your home has an old, inefficient water heater, it likely uses more water (and more energy) than it needs to – an efficiency issue that’s easy to fix by updating your building materials and utilities.
If your home uses inefficient materials or solutions, such as artificial lighting for a room that receives a lot of sunlight, switch to a more natural or efficient solution to reduce your energy and water usage and lower your monthly bills.
Make energy and water efficiency a fun new challenge
It’s easy to think of energy and water efficiency as a task – a repetitive job that you need to focus on. Doing so often makes being more efficient seem more difficult than it actually is.
Instead of viewing energy and water efficiency as a job, think of it as a challenge for you and your family. Every month, make it a personal goal to be more efficient than the last and watch your habits transform over the course of several months.