Tips to Make Your Home Energy Efficient
In April, we celebrate Earth Day, an annual event supporting environmental protection. Make going green a family affair by changing your home habits to increase energy efficiency. Implement small or big changes to make a huge difference.
- Unplug electronics and chargers when not in use.
- A new laptop uses 85% less electricity than a desktop computer.
- Whenever possible, read documents on your computer instead of printing them.
- Try a shampoo bar instead of liquid shampoo for less plastic packaging.
- Turn off the water when brushing your teeth.
- Invest in eco-friendly toilet paper, such as Betterway Bamboo Toilet Paper.
- Switch to a certified low-flow shower head to save 2,700 gallons of water a year.
- Light emitting diodes (LEDs) use up to 90% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs.
- Look for window treatments that prevent heat loss in the winter and deflect the sun’s rays to keep your home cooler in the summer.
- Energy vampires are devices that use energy and drain power, even when turned off. These include chargers, video game consoles and cable boxes. Put devices on a power strip, and flip them off when you aren’t using them.
- Use a programmable thermostat to adjust the times you turn on the heating or air-conditioning according to a pre-set schedule.
- Looking into buying a new car? Reduce CO2 emissions with electric and hybrid cars.
- Check that the garage door has an intact gasket running its entire width, which helps seal the door to the floor and keeps the weather out.
- Seal any potential leaks in the walls of your garage.
- Add reusable wool dryer balls to your laundry instead of single-use dryer sheets.
- Wash laundry in cold water instead of hot.
- Decorate spaces using paint without volatile organic compounds, which are carbon-containing organic chemicals. Check for a Greenguard certification.
- Cut down on energy usage by using your ceiling fan.
- Inspect your bedroom windows every year, and re-caulk any gaps that you find.
- Set up your television’s sleep mode, so your TV will turn off automatically.
- Reduce waste by switching to cloth diapers (at least part time if you don’t feel you can commit). Find cloth diapers at greenmountaindiapers.com.
- Think long-term. Invest in furniture that can adapt as your child ages. Some cribs can convert into bed frames.
- Purchase fabrics made from eco-friendly and sustainable materials, such as cotton, hemp or linen.
- Compost your food scraps, coffee grounds, leaves, paper towels and newspapers to turn them into soil for your yard. Learn how to compost at georgiarecycles.org.
- Don’t peek at your meals – your oven’s temperature drops about 25 degrees every time you open the door.
- Match your pots and pans to the burner. A six-inch pan on an eight-inch electric burner will waste more than 40% of the heat produced, and food will take longer to cook.
- Use small electric pans, toaster ovens or convection ovens for small meals rather than your large stove or oven. A toaster or convection oven uses one-third to one-half as much energy as a full-sized oven.
Learn more energy-saving tips and how to do a DIY home energy assessment at energy.gov.