We use lots of energy at home, and often it is invisible tous. There are plenty of savings opportunities.
THE BIG PICTURE
Energy use in the home (gas and oil for heating, electricity forair conditioning, lighting and appliances) is about 14% of thenation's total energy usage. Individual homes vary greatly in theirenergy bills, even in the same neighborhood. This is because homeenergy use is driven by specific features of each house (squarefootage, age, and so on) as well as the behaviors of theiroccupants (use of electronics, number of appliances, how the lightsare used, and so on.)
The "bad news" is that some 50% of the energy delivered to thehome is wasted through poorly constructed homes, aging heatingsystems, older water heaters and more. The good news is that thiswaste can be reduced through home improvements, new appliances andenergy saving behaviors.
#1 Solar can put cash in your pocket. Solarprices are dropping quickly, and - though many homeowners don'trealize it - they could put cash in their pocket each month byinstalling solar. Solar systems are typically sized to cover 70%of a home's electricity use, and it gets easier each year tofinance or lease a solar system.
#2 Lighting and electronics use 20 - 25% of a home'selectricity. These are two areas where there are simpleand no-cost ways to save energy.
#3 A modern refrigerator uses less energy than alightbulb. Rapid technology improvements have reducedrefrigerator energy use by more than 50% in the past 15 years. Many modern fridges use 600 kWh per year, less than a 100-wattlight bulb left on 24/7 for a year, which is 876 kWh.
ENERGY SAVINGS TIPS
Energy-saving behaviors can have a big impact. Much of the energy used in the home comes from our habits: lightsleft on, electronics plugged in, outdoor lights burning during theday, and so on.
Buy a new washing machine. In almost everyregion of the country, a new washing machine pays for itself inunder 2 years. Modern washing machines use less energy, lesswater, and also spin the clothes so that much less dryer time isneeded as well.
Simple shading solutions work. No need tothink about fancy and expensive ways to stay cool in the summer. Simply plant some trees or bushes, put up a shade screen or awning,or even just draw the curtains. Protect the sunny side of yourhouse from the direct light, and watch your electricity bill godown.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Get your personal estimate of savings from solar, find yourlocal rebates and see how much you can save from those simplethings. Go to www.WattzOn.com and getstarted!
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