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5 Ways to Keep Your Energy Bills Low in 2019

5 Ways to Keep Your Energy Bills Low in 2019

You may be shooting for “more” when it comes to many of your 2019 goals (more exercise, more vacations, etc.), but we’re willing to bet that “more” in regards to your energy bill isn’t one of those goals.

If saving money is at the top of your to-do list for 2019, you’ll want to implement these easy, energy-saving tips:

 

  1. Don’t heat or cool an empty house
  2. Update outdated faucets, shower heads and toilets
  3. Schedule regular maintenance & tune-ups
  4. Get rid of air leaks
  5. Change your air filter regularly

Ready to save in 2019? Keep reading.

Tip #1: Don’t heat or cool an empty house

Seems obvious, right?

Unfortunately, many homeowners unknowingly waste money heating or cooling their home throughout the day when no one is there to benefit from conditioned air.

So instead of paying for air conditioning no one will enjoy, you should modify your thermostat settings so that you are paying for heating or cooling only when you’re home.

For the best energy savings, you should turn your thermostat back 7°-10° from its normal setting for 8 hours a day.

According to Energy.gov, adjusting your thermostat this way could end up saving you up to 10% a year on your heating/cooling bill.

Although you can manually change the temperature on a regular thermostat, remembering to do this multiple times a day can be tricky and inconvenient, not to mention the discomfort of coming home to temperatures that are too cold or hot.

The solution to those problems?

Install a smart or programmable thermostat. These thermostats can be paired with your schedule, changing the temperature as needed to save energy and money throughout the day without compromising comfort or convenience.

Want to automate the temperature-setting process? We can install a programmable thermostat for you.

Tip #2: Update faucets, shower heads & toilets

These plumbing fixtures could be wasting money—without you even knowing.

Faucets, shower heads and toilets can raise your utility bill if they are...

  1. Leaking
  2. Outdated and/or in-efficient

Leaking fixtures

Leaks can occur in the fixtures themselves or the pipes connecting to these fixtures… and they can be costly. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, a leak of one drip per second wastes 1,661 gallons of water and can cost up to $35 per year. Finding and repairing these is a great way to lower your monthly bill.

Outdated and/or inefficient fixtures

Older faucets and showerheads typically have higher flow rates (gallons per minute) than new, more efficient ones.

While older models might have a high flow rate, newer kitchen faucets typically come with aerators that help decrease this flow rate, using less water and saving you money. Low-flow fixtures are fairly inexpensive, around $10 to $20 a piece and can bring water savings of 25%–60%.

Like older faucets, older toilets can also be inefficient and waste water. Typically, older toilets use 3–7 gallons of water for every flush. Newer, high-efficiency toilets use as little as 1.28 gallons of water per flush, which will cut down your water usage considerably.

While this cost-saving tip requires some up-front investment, it’s worth it in the long run. If you’re interested in upgrading your faucets, showerheads or toilets, contact us today for a quote.

Tip #3: Invest in regular HVAC and plumbing maintenance

Nothing is worse than a costly plumbing or HVAC repair that could have been avoided by a simple tune-up.

In fact, getting regular maintenance (at least once per year) for your water heater and HVAC system can reduce breakdowns by as much as 95% and also lower energy bills by up to 30%.

One convenient way to save money on HVAC and plumbing maintenance is to invest in a maintenance plan. When you join a plumbing and HVAC maintenance plan, you pay a small monthly fee to get benefits like:

  • 1 tune-up per year for your furnace, AC and water heater
  • Free service calls
  • 10% off repairs and service
  • Priority service over non-plan customers
  • And more

For more information about our maintenance plan, visit our Service Partner Plan page.

Tip #4: Get rid of air leaks

On average, air sealing your home to eliminate leaks can help you save up to 11% on energy costs.

You see, when your house has significant leaks, hot and cold air escapes easier, making it that much harder for your HVAC system to keep your house comfortable. The harder your HVAC system has to work, the higher your energy bills will be.

The trick to air sealing your home is determining where these leaks are coming from in the first place. The image below shows the locations of common air leaks:

Source

If you want to fix leaks yourself, check out these tips for sealing air leaks. Want a professional to inspect your ductwork for leaks? Contact us today for a duct leak inspection.

Tip #5: Change your air filter regularly

Believe it or not, a dirty air filter can cause a lot of problems, including high energy bills.

When an air filter is dirty, it becomes a barrier that blocks air flow. Because of this, your air conditioner or heater works longer trying to maintain the desired temperature, upping your utility bill.

Clean air filter (left), dirty air filter (right)

To save money on your bill, you should change filters every 1–2 months on average and every month during the hottest and coldest times of the year. Changing your filter that often will help your system run efficiently and your bill stay cost-efficient.

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We know that all sounds like a lot, but these small fixes can make a big impact on long-term savings. If you have questions about any of these cost-saving tips or want to implement one but don’t know how, reach out to us!

Interested in learning more about common ways you can save energy and money? Here are a few more resources.

  1. Hate High Energy Bills? Don’t Make These 3 Water Heater Mistakes
  2. 3 Winter Thermostat Mistakes That Cost You Money
  3. 4 Cooling Myths That Raise Your Electricity Bill