Whether at home, on the job, or at the farm — small changes and smart decisions can have a powerful impact on your power bill. Check out our favourite tips to help you save energy.
Using a programmable thermostat can help avoid unnecessary temperature fluctuations, which draw more energy. This type of thermostat can save you approximately 10-15% on your heating and cooling costs per year.
Ensure that you are not losing heat unnecessarily through poorly sealed ducts or spaces such as attics, basements or rooms that are not in use. Sealing and insulating ducts can go a long way towards lowering your electricity bills. Using low-cost caulk to seal cracks and openings in your home can also help keep the temperatures regulated.
Simple maintenance such as routinely replacing or cleaning air filters increases their efficiency and can lower energy consumption by up to 15%. Your air conditioner's evaporator coil should also be cleaned annually to ensure the system is performing at optimal levels. Another way to ensure the heat produced can be transferred throughout the home efficiently is to ensure that your heating vents are free from any obstructions.
Most ceiling fans can be switched to change the direction of the airflow. During the winter, the blades should push air upwards. This drives the hot air back down around the edges of the room. Open your blinds or curtains on sunny winter days and close them as soon as the sun goes down to retain heat. Using fans to cool your home in summer will allow you to raise your thermostat four degrees, which can help lower your electricity bills without sacrificing overall comfort.
Heating water with an electric water heater can add up to 25% of your home’s hot water power costs. Install low-flow faucet aerators on sinks, or purchase low-flow showerheads when renovating. Retrofitting your faucets may reduce your hot water consumption by up to 50%.
Window treatments or coverings such as blinds, shades, window wraps and films can all help regulate temperature fluctuations and reduce energy costs. Use sunlight to your advantage by using window treatments that allow you to use natural light while reducing heat loss and gain.
ENERGY STAR appliances could save you 10-50% of the energy required, depending on the comparison model – and much more if you are replacing an old appliance. The ENERGY STAR logo can be found on certified appliances, furnaces, water heaters, electronics, windows and insulation.
Switching to high-quality LED lightbulbs can save up to 75% in power consumption than incandescent bulbs. Plus, LEDs should last 10 to 15 years. Good quality LEDS will last much longer and save money over time. Not only that, their prices have come down significantly in the past few years.
Some appliances in your home and tools in your shop use more energy than others. You can monitor the energy consumption by using an electricity monitor or by keeping track of the information manually using the readings on your electricity meter.