Consumers are growing more aware of the financial benefits of owning energy-efficient homes and appliances. But do you know how much you could actually save? Through replacing aging equipment and other tools that are less efficient than newer models, you can dramatically cut utility bills. The cost savings of owning a sustainable yet high-performance home can eventually recoup the money put into these upgrades.
Here is how much you can expect to save by having a green home:
Heating and Cooling
The U.S. Department of Energy noted heating and cooling accounts for more than half of a home’s energy consumption. Homeowners can make their homes more efficient by increasing insulation and replacing windows that may have allowed heated or cooled air to escape. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission noted consumers can check the Energy Guide label on heating and cooling systems to determine the energy consumption of a product.
Sustainable Building Materials
Whether homeowners want to move into a new eco-friendly home or enhance their structure’s current features, they can renovate or build a home with sustainable materials. These materials, such as recycled marble and hardwood, lower the amount of waste in landfills and may increase the quality of the homes inside environment, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Since construction represents 60 percent of the nation’s solid waste generation, reusing flooring, insulation, drywall and other items are essential to reduce landfill waste. Sustainable materials may increase water efficiency as well as boost the indoor air quality of these homes because these building items are not made from harmful chemical substances.
The way you wash your clothes, including the temperature of the water, may determine how much money you save. According to The Simple Dollar, washing clothes in hot/warm water may cost a total of $0.68 per load, if a load costs an average of $0.15 per kilowatt and consumes 4.5 kWh. However, you can slash this expense by washing in cold water, which may cost only $0.04 due to reduced energy consumption, saving you $0.64 per load in comparison.
You could also choose to purchase an Energy Star-certified washing machine. The DOE estimated an Energy Star washer and dryer uses 20 percent less energy than standard models. These appliances conserve energy through automatic shutoff features and efficient designs.
For consumers who don’t want to upgrade to Energy Star washers and dryers, they can use low-tech methods like dryer racks to save energy.
Heating and cooling a home to a suitable temperature may be a waste if there is no one in the home to enjoy it. To save energy and money, homeowners should install a programmable thermostat.
Energy Star revealed a programmable thermostat may reduce energy costs by $180 per year. Through establishing temperature settings based on whether people are home, homeowners can stay comfortable during winter and summer months without breaking the bank.
Through following these tips, you can lower your energy bills and potentially live a healthier life in an energy-efficient home.