This is a guest post from Payless Power, the most reliable electricity provider in Dallas most reliable electricity provider in Dallas
After a long winter of snow and ice, spring is a welcomed change that brings warm weather and blooming flower buds. But along with the temperature shift, spring is also known to be a time in which energy consumption for homeowners is high, often unnecessarily. The good news is that there are ways to cut back on energy use, reducing the amount of electricity and gas we need as well as slashing the price we pay for utilities. By following these simple tips, you can cut your energy usage this spring.
Inspect Your Home
The effects of winter can leave your house with some minor damage that can go undetected for quite some time. Though seemingly inconsequential, those nicks can have unseen consequences, like wearing away at the caulking around your windows and doors leaving you susceptible to unwanted warmth slipping in. To counteract that, take some time to give your house an inspection from the outside. Take note of what areas need to be caulked and also replace your weather stripping. This will help you to keep your home cool during the spring and summer months.
Fans not Fanatics
As the seasons begin to change and the cold temperatures become warm, many people turn to using fans as an alternative to running more costly air conditioning units. A common misconception held by many is that by keeping your fan running, the temperature within the room is decreasing. In reality, fans are only circulating air within a room. This allows for the evaporation of sweat from the skin, helping to reduce body temperature and causing us to believe that the space is in fact getting colder. As a result, the true benefit of fans can only be felt while in the room. Therefore, be sure to turn them off when you’re not in the area so that you’re not just burning electricity. The adjustment will reduce your energy output and will save you some money.
Chores for Heat
During the spring, the days are warm while the nights tend to cool off. Sometimes the chill is enough to prompt turning up the temperature a bit for the night, but before you touch that thermostat consider this. Certain appliances within your home (dishwasher, oven, washer and dryer) create heat when in use, increasing the overall temperature in your home. A simple switch to doing chores at later times in the day can supplement the use of the thermostat. As an added bonus, some electricity providers offer cheaper rates for operating your appliances outside of peak hours. This strategy also works during other seasons as well.
Using Blinds, Curtains, and Drapes
Even when you close your windows, heat can still make its way into your home during the day, raising the temperature within your house and keeping your hand on the A/C knob. To keep your house cool, use your blinds, curtains, and drapes to block out the sun. This is particularly important for rooms you rarely venture into, which are often forgotten sources of unwanted heat. When thinking about how and where to set up window coverings, identify which side of the house faces the sun. Be mindful that the color and type of fabric your drapes and curtains are made of has implications for their effectiveness. For maximum heat absorption, avoid dark colors and try finding drapes with white backings. For blinds, effectiveness in preventing heat gain depends on whether or not they are shut so be sure to close them fully instead of allowing slits of light to get into your home.
Cook on the Grill
There’s nothing better than a cook out during the warmer months. Aside from being a welcomed sign of changing temperatures, grilling is also a key to saving energy. Cooking outside as opposed to inside allows you to keep from using the oven within your home, which will help to keep it cool. It also reduces gas or electricity use, depending on the type of oven. This coupled with eating outside can help you reduce the incremental energy used during meals whether that be from the lights, television, etc.
Lighten Up Your Fridge
Few things in your home need to run on electricity 24/7 and as a result, your refrigerator is one of the biggest contributors to energy consumption. To optimize air circulation, begin by pulling the fridge out a few feet and removing dust from the coils. From there, remove any food that is past its expiration date, does not need to be refrigerated, or you have no intention of finishing. You don’t have to completely clear out the fridge, but clearing up space can help to keep air inside when the door is opened. Also, due to the amount of energy used by the freezer, be sure to turn off the ice maker every now and again.
And these aren’t the only ways to reduce energy consumption this spring. In fact, you may have found your own methods of cutting back on gas and electricity that work just as well. Just remember that as a homeowner, there are always ways to recycle, reduce, and reuse in whatever context that may be. So, enjoy the spring and whether a little or a lot, see what you can save.