Small, inexpensive household projects can save energy, conserve heat, and slash your utility bills. While it’s often necessary to contact a professional for help with home maintenance, there are plenty of do-it-yourself projects that can make big impacts on your household energy consumption.
Install High-Efficiency Faucets
High-efficiency faucets can reduce your water usage by almost half and are easy to install. These faucets are designed to maintain high water pressure while reducing water usage, so they don’t sacrifice effectiveness for efficiency. Installing high-efficiency faucets is one the least expensive ways to reduce your home’s water usage, and they only take a few hours to mount.
Replace Worn Weather Stripping
Old, worn weather stripping around windows and doors lets cold air in and warm air out of your home, forcing your furnace to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. This process increases your utility bills and can shorten your furnace’s lifespan. Fresh weather stripping prevents air leaks, decreasing the stress on your furnace and helping it work more efficiently.
Check around your doors and windows for air leaks once or twice a year. Most weather stripping needs to be changed every two or three years, and replacing it is easy to do and inexpensive. Simply peel off the old material and attach the new.
Perform Regular HVAC Maintenance
Regular HVAC maintenance cuts energy usage while increasing the system’s lifespan. The Building Efficiency Initiative states that effective HVAC maintenance can cut energy costs by 5 to 40 percent, improving efficiency and reducing utility bills. HVAC systems have over 100 parts, and many of them require regular maintenance for the system to maintain optimal performance. For example, monitoring the HVAC’s compressor can alert you to small leaks before they become larger. Even small leaks boost energy usage and strain the unit, so it’s important to find leaks early.
While a licensed HVAC repair company should perform most heating and cooling maintenance, homeowners can improve HVAC efficiency and increase system lifespan by changing the air filter regularly. Replacing the filter every three months can mean the difference between a comfortable home environment and a damaged unit in need of an expensive repairs.
Install Energy-Saving Light Bulbs
According to the Department of Energy, energy-saving light bulbs use 25 to 80 percent less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. Although energy-efficient bulbs cost more to purchase than incandescent bulbs, they save you money in the long term. Energy-saving bulbs are warm and bright, and replacing your home’s light bulbs with them can save you hundreds of dollars every year.
Boost your home’s efficiency and reduce your carbon footprint by performing these projects around your house. You’ll quickly recoup any upfront expenses through lowered utility bills and reduced appliance repair costs. Many energy-efficient DIY projects are simple to do, and you can complete them in less than an hour. Some are more complex and take longer to complete, but the energy and money you’ll save down the road make them well worth the effort.