6 Easy tips to increase your energy efficiency – bravo properties gas pressure definition chemistry

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With the summer months just around the corner, I can almost feel my neighbors in the Valley start to tense at the anticipation of preposterous electricity bills. If you have ever thought about ways you can make your home more energy efficient, now is the time to get ready for the summer heat!

Taking steps towards energy efficiency in the home can really help reduce your monthly bills. From big investments like installing solar panels to simple adjustments like cutting back on the amount of energy you use, every little bit can save you money in the long run.

According to the United States Energy Department, 33% of utility bills go towards lighting, 44% to heating and cooling, 14% to water heating, and 9% to the refrigerator. Knowing where you can get the most bang for your buck can help you prioritize which areas of your energy usage could use some TLC. Conduct an Energy Audit

An energy audit will let you know exactly how your home’s heating and cooling systems function and whether they should be replaced. A professional contractor can analyze your energy system and utility bills to ensure that they coincide. He or she can also use the latest technology to find problems that cannot be detected by visual inspection and should offer some cost-effective recommendations.

The network of ducts that transports hot and cold air throughout your home are usually connected to your central air conditioner. Common issues such as improper insulation could lead to a surprising amount of energy loss over time. Showing some love to your duct system can end up saving you up to 20% on heating and cooling costs. Install a Programmable Thermostat

We all know that we should turn down our thermostat when we leave the house, but let’s face it: We don’t always remember to do these little things that we know we should. Outfitting your home with a programmable thermostat (or even a smart meter, if you like all the bells and whistles) will enable you to control your energy usage without having to think about it. You can save as much as 10% on your energy costs with this simple device. Replace Run-Down Appliances

Large appliances like refrigerators, washers and dryers are prime suspects for energy inefficiency. Replacing old or worn-down appliances could end up being one of the best decisions you could make in saving money and reducing energy use. Be sure to purchase appliances that contain the Energy Star label, as this shows they are the most energy efficient products; refrigerators with this label can save between $35 and $70 annually compared to other appliances.

Turn off your computer during long periods of non-use. The monitor alone uses half the system’s energy, and leaving it on all night can really rack up the energy usage. Also, unplug laptop and cellphone chargers that are not charging devices, as even a cord plugged in on its own can drain energy from your system. Turn off the lights when you are not in the room or install motion sensors that will minimize the amount of time that they are on. Extra Credit: Use Strategic Landscaping!

Did you know that you can save up to 25% of typical household energy by positioning trees around your home’s perimeter? For example, you can reduce the effect of winter winds by planting evergreen trees or shrubs to the west and north of your home. Also, trees that lose their leaves in the fall (called deciduous trees) can allow sunlight to heat your house in the winter while providing shade in the summer; be sure to put them to the south and west of your house.

Saving energy is not only cost-effective but it is also environmentally friendly, and little changes can go a long way. Remember, some energy efficient changes can be done on a daily basis while others are one-time investments. We recommend starting small, something that fits your lifestyle and your budget — and remember that consistency is key! Whether you are a new homeowner or simply want to make a positive change in your home’s energy use, we hope these simple tips can help improve your quality of life.