1. Ask your builder for ENERGY STAR® appliances
The appliances and electronics in your home consume 20% of the electricity you use. Request only ENERGY STAR for your new home’s refrigerator, washing machine, dishwater, and other appliances. Over the lifetime of owning these appliances, you will save $900!
2. Get cold while doing laundry
Your hot water adds 20% to your utility bill every month with a conventional hot water tank. Use cold water instead. This will not reduce the effectiveness of your cleaning routine, especially if you use detergents formulated for cold water. If you do three loads of laundry weekly, you could save between $25 and $100 every year by washing in cold water.
3. Take shorter showers with an efficient showerhead
Most new homes today have showerheads that use about 2.5 gallons of water per minute (gpm). Have your new home builder upgrade to showerheads that consume only 1.85 gpm. Doing so could save you $25 or more every year. Save even more money by installing a shower timer to reduce your time in the shower from 12 minutes to 5 minutes. This extra step could further reduce your hot water costs by between $10 and $100, depending on how many people are in your house.
4. Go low-temp with your water heater
Most homes don’t need steaming hot water for everyday use. Lower your water tank’s temperature from 140 degrees F to 120 degrees F without compromising your comfort or the functionality of your appliances. Doing so will reduce your hot water bill by 10% monthly.
5. Hang laundry to dry
Most households spend about $100 a year on electricity to run a clothes dryer. You could save this money instead by hanging your clothes to dry either indoors or outdoors. You’ll also save money by protecting your clothes. The heat of a dryer wears down the fibers of your clothing over time. Hanging your clothes to air dry prevents this damage to your clothes, which will save you from replacing them over the years.
6. Have a programmable thermostat installed
If you’re at work or school and away from your home during the day, there’s no need to keep the temperature within a perfect range. After all, your furniture doesn’t need to be cool on hot days. Turn up the thermostat by 10-15 degrees for 8 hours every day to save 10% on your monthly energy bill. This is easy to do with a programmable thermostat. Ask your builder to install one before you move in. It could save you up to $180 every year.
7. Draw your blinds
Most homeowners spend about $1,800 every year on heating and cooling. Given our hot climate, you’ll likely pay $300 monthly for air conditioning during the peak cooling months. The sun warms your home during this time, which will increase your need to use your fans and air conditioners to stay comfortable. You can lower your need for air conditioning by drawing your window blinds. Shade your windows – especially those that receive direct sunlight – with drapes and blinds to cut the heat gain by 45% in the summer months.
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