Why should you want to make your home energy efficient?
Nowadays there is a shortage of attention on making your home energy efficient, after all, we are a solar panel company and make our living off of it – for a good reason! Technology is evolving and “energy efficient” is a selling point. Environmentalists, governments, and social media carry a huge emphasis on environmental preservation and activism, citing our carbon footprint as a huge focal point and basis for action. The Nature Conservancy cites the average American’s carbon footprint as 16 tons (while the global average is closer to 4 tons – yikes). The organization also says “To have the best chance of avoiding a 2℃ rise in global temperatures, the average global carbon footprint per year needs to drop to under 2 tons by 2050.”
If avoiding Global Warming isn’t reason enough of an incentive – then saving your hard-earned money should be. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average American light bill was $119 per month (so it’s a safe bet that it’s higher now). According to Nerd Wallet-a massively successful personal finance website – tweaking your energy usage could save you as much as 25%. So if we assume a light bill around $130, that’s an extra $390 a year in your pocket. That’s enough to cover Christmas gifts for your close loved ones, a staycation, or simply a wardrobe update. Whatever you choose to use it for it will probably be better than giving it to your local power company.
What Can You Do?
1. Mind your lighting – One of the obvious (and most budget friendly ways) to make your home more energy efficient is to be mindful about your lighting. Thanks to smart home developments it’s easier than ever to not only control your fixtures on demand (turn lights or appliances on or off with the click of a button or simply asking a smart device hub to do it (like Amazon Alexa or Google Nest), but to actually program these to work on a schedule that will save you money and carbon emissions, without you having to ever think about it again after set up. Additionally, you’ll want to get energy efficient lighting, such as LED lighting. According to Energy.gov LEDs use up to 90% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. Short of solar panel installation, this is about as efficient as it gets. Win win!
2. Hvac – Here in Florida, this is a big one for us to help us to be energy efficient. Chances are a huge part of your light bill comes from that pesky AC that is completely non-optional here in the sunshine state, but the good news is it’s also one of the easiest factors to change and be energy efficient. Some of the smaller things you can do are making sure you change your air filters, set your system on a programmable schedule or smart home device that will adjust the temperature based on the time of day and whether you’re at home or not, get regular maintenance done, and using the ceiling fan in the room that you’re in (which allows you to raise the thermostat about 4 degrees without a change in comfort!). With this you can have a home that is energy efficient.
3. Tankless water heater – Not so fun fact; your water heater is one of the biggest energy drains in your home and can also be energy efficient. The Department of Energy estimates that switching to a tankless water heater (one that heats water as it passes through as opposed to storing it in a tank) can save you around $108 dollars a year. Pair that with the aforementioned savings and you’re well on your way to saving substantial amounts of money every year.
4. Windows -This might not be one that comes to mind immediately, but is especially important the older your house (and windows) are to be energy efficient. Replacing your windows with Energy Star certified windows ensures that you’re getting the highest quality window in terms of heat gain/loss and sunlight transmittance, which leads to saving money on your appliance usage. ing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.
5. Solar panels – Lastly, but certainly not least, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention the biggest energy saver of them all; solar panels will be the most efficient one. While the other things on this list can save you hundreds, solar installation may very well save you THOUSANDS. Despite the solar panel cost that comes with first time installation, the savings are unparalleled.For instance, energysage.com cites the average 20 year savings of solar panels in Florida as upwards of $13,000, and an average 6kw system can save up to 6 metric tons of your carbon emission. In other words, remember those pesky carbon emissions we need to lower by 2050? Solar panels are a great way to do that.