Five Rooms Ready for Savings: Pt. I – Bed & Bath
This post is the first in our series featuring ways to reduce consumption and save money in your home’s most used rooms.
When you wake up in the morning, your first thought probably isn’t, “How will I save energy in my home today?” But maybe it’s time to incorporate energy savings into your morning and nighttime routines. Your bedroom is the most used room in the house and — along with the bathroom — is a place where you can start saving energy today.
There are a few simple ways to make your bedroom and bath more energy efficient: If you get a lot of natural light, open your blinds and curtains to brighten your room with sunlight in the morning instead of light fixtures. Light your room at night without burning out your wallet by replacing all of your traditional incandescent lights with CFLs or LEDs; CFLs use up to 75 percent less energy than traditional incandescent lights, while LEDs last up to 10 and 15 times longer.
Instead of relying on your air conditioner, set your ceiling fan to counterclockwise to cool the room by 3-5°F without lowering the thermostat. When the air conditioning is on, make sure to clear the area in front of your floor vents to prevent air blockage.
Now that you’ve started down the path towards saving energy, why not go a few steps further? Place your hand near your light switches and outlet faceplates. Feel a draft? That’s an air leak that allows hot air into your cool home and lets cool air escape. Give your A/C a break by installing inexpensive foam gaskets behind the switches and faceplates to reduce air leaks through even the smallest of gaps and cracks.
Try your hand at a couple more low-cost tips:
- Turn off bath exhaust fans within 20 minutes of bathing; and when replacing exhaust fans, consider installing high-efficiency, low-noise models.
- Use energy-saving power strips. These allow you to easily turn off all electronics, like your TV, charging devices and lamps, with one click.
For improvements with an even greater return, consider:
- Conserving electricity and water by installing an energy efficient showerhead.
- Caulking and weather stripping gaps and cracks to prevent air loss and leakage. Caulking is best for sealing gaps or cracks that are ¼ inch or less. Use weather stripping for locations where movement occurs, such as windows and doors.
- Installing a wireless outlet controller to turn off any electronic device remotely from your computer or smartphone app. Simply plug the controller tool into the wall, and then plug any appliance or device into the controller to instantly give you the power to save on-the-go and keep your home safe
Your energy savings doesn’t have to end here: Work with a professional home energy auditor to learn how your home is performing and where there are inefficiencies and opportunities to save on your monthly utility bills. You can also use our DIY energy guide to get started with a do-it-yourself assessment.
If you’re eager to find out the next room you can experience more savings, check back next week for part two.