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Energy Conservation and You

At Mainstream Electric, we talk a lot about electrical safety and repairs you can make at home. Another thing we enjoy discussing is ways you can reduce just how much energy you use on a daily basis. Energy consumption is an expensive part of daily life and, while that’s what energy is there for, reducing the amount we use can be a boon to your household’s economic bottom-line each month.

It’s fortunate that a portion of your monthly energy bill comes from wasted energy because that means you can actually take steps to improve how much you spend on energy each month.

Simple Steps

Quick, easy solutions for saving money are what we all want at the end of the day. So simple fixes to energy efficiency losses are the first stop when it comes to keeping money in your wallet each month. The short form is, clean your home, prevent leaks, and turn off lights and devices when they aren’t being used. To explain:

Cleaning – Dust, dirt, and debris are a problem for your home. Most of the energy spent in the home comes from heating and cooling. Either heating water for your indoor plumbing, or controlling the general climate inside your home. Dust traps heat and clogs airways. When too much is present it becomes harder to cool your home and makes it more difficult for electronics to operate without substantial heat output. As an added point, vacuum the refrigeration coils on the back of your refrigerator once a year to cut down on power losses from the fridge.

Heating and Cooling Leaks – A lot of energy that’s spent on heating and cooling is lost to leaks both inside and out of the home. A pressure check of your ventilation system will detect leaks into the crawl spaces of your home (this will require a professional) but you should also perform a check for drafts, gaps, and leaks that lead to the outside. You want to control how heat is transferred outside of your home, and allowing warm air inside during the summer (or the reverse during the winter) is just going to force your central air system to work harder, draining your resources.

Turn off Lights and Devices – No they don’t use much energy on their own, but every little bit helps and shutting off devices you don’t use will help to reduce overall energy costs throughout the week. This is especially true if you’re going away for a while. If you’ll be gone for multiple days, consider emptying the fridge and turning it off. Yes it will take time to cool back down when you return, but you’ll be saving on the cost of refrigeration for the duration of your absence.

Landscaping and Shade – Block your home from gathering so much solar heating during the hottest portion of the day. Thermal curtains on windows, solar screens, and shade trees will all block your home from the sun’s view during the hottest portions of the day. During the winter, using heavy curtains to trap heat inside the home during the day will help you regulate energy, meaning less fuel and electricity use for temperature regulation throughout the year.

It’s amazing that a few simple tricks and techniques can help you save energy from electrical losses. If you’re willing to spend a little extra on the startup, you can also spring for more energy-efficient devices or installing passive heating and cooling systems or renewable energy generation for your home to help mitigate energy costs.