Carbon footprint is already decreased because you are using solar energy. You are saving a big amount on electricity bills as well. Still, you can take some steps to decrease the usage of solar energy to boost your savings. You will have less electricity bills from the grid for electricity used at night and outages.
Following are the key steps to boost your savings in solar energy:
Solar panel maintenance:
Installation of solar panels is an important investment and demands great care too. Maintenance of solar panels is not a big deal. You need very few steps to keep your system in optimal condition. The most important fact about the maintenance of solar panels is cleaning the surface of solar panels. Any type of dirt, dust or other objects sticking to the surface of solar panels can decrease the absorption of energy by solar panels. This leads to poor performance of the solar system.
HVAC energy efficiency:
According to recent research, more than half of the energy consumed is used in heating and cooling homes. You need to be smart to make advanced decisions about heating and cooling your home. The smart decision about HVAC (Heating, cooling, ventilating, air conditioning) can help to minimize the usage the energy.
Here is how you can get maximum energy saving from HVAC:
- Change the air filter regularly:
Cleaning and changing the air filter is the most important and quickest step to achieve HVAC efficiency. The dust and dirt can cause low performance and high usage of energy. You can make a schedule to check, clean, and replace the air filters. The dirty filters take more time to heat and cool the home. As an estimate, changing the faulty and dirty air filter decreases almost 15% energy usage. It is a pretty big number.
- Seal the air ducts:
Each room in your house receives conditioned air through the air ducts. They may also be significant energy wasters. In a normal home, leaks and improperly connected ducting result in the loss of 20–30% of the air passing through the duct system. The end consequence is a poorly functioning HVAC system, greater utility costs, and trouble maintaining a pleasant indoor climate.
Hence, you should hire a professional to properly fit the ducts and seal the leaks. It will lead you to get the maximum energy efficiency from HVAC.
- Install a Smart Thermostat:
A smart programmable thermostat can provide great savings in energy consumption. You only need to set a normal temperature for almost 8 hours per day. You can set this temperature when you are sleeping or away from your home. It is calculated that a thermostat can save nearly 10% if you select a normal temperature for 8 hours a day.
- Upgrade HVAC System:
The upgraded version of AC consumed less energy than the older ones. Your AC may be only 10 years old but it has old technology and cause high energy consumption. Newer AC will save 20-40% of energy approximately. In the same way, heaters can also be costly in energy consumption if they are too old. Replace the heaters as well. Be upgraded and save energy.
- Update doors and windows:
Ever experience a breeze in your house? These are air leaks, which may be expensive to ignore. About 25–30% of your home’s heat gain and loss occurs via windows and doors. By air-sealing your house and insulating the attics and crawl spaces, you may save your HVAC expenditures by an estimated 15% on average.
A home with good insulation and no leaks uses less energy to maintain temperature, which might result in significant savings on your next energy bill. On windows that still seem draughty after weatherizing, you may also put in snug-fitting, insulated shades.
Quick fixes to increase energy efficiency:
Besides HVAC efficiency steps, you can change your daily energy consumption habits to increase efficiency to the next level. Only smaller changes can provide potential savings. Here are some tips and tricks that you can use besides the HVAC.
- Use energy-efficient Appliances:
Always use certified appliances that use less energy to run. Old and outdated appliances can be costly for you in the sense of energy consumption. Hence, list out all the old appliances and replace them with the latest and energy-efficient appliances. This will be a great step to save a bunch of money.
- Change the laundry habits:
The habit of laundry can give a boost to energy efficiency. You need to run the clothes through cold water instead of hot water. It is scientifically best and economically useful. 90% of the total energy used in the laundry is consumed to heat the water. Hence, using cold water will surely give a significant saving.
- Use LED Lightbulbs:
The old technology lightbulbs consume 75% more energy than LED bulbs. They have less life as well. Using such old lightbulbs can be the worst decision. This is the right time to go with LED lightbulbs to save the bulk of energy. LED lightbulbs produce less heat and last longer than old-technology lightbulbs.
- Turn off and unplug unused appliances:
We refer to the electricity used by coffee makers, computer chargers, and other home appliances as vampire power. These devices still use energy even when they are off or not in use merely by being hooked into a power outlet. Simply by going about your house, you may identify “energy suckers” and disconnect them while not in use. To reduce energy use, purchase outlet timers or smart power strips.
- Lower the water heater temperature:
Water heaters are champions in using energy. They are calculated to use approximately 20% of the total energy consumed by all appliances at home. You must control the power consumption by lowering the water heater’s temperature. As they consume most of the total energy, only a slight fluctuation in temperature can lead to big differences. You only need to decrease the temperature a little down, for example from 140 degrees Fahrenheit to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Right use energy during peak hours:
The energy consumed in peak hours generally charges higher rates. Hence, you need to use less energy directly during peak hours. The best option is to use battery storage. You can charge the batteries on off-peak hours and use them during peak hours. This will cause fewer energy bills.
From all the above-mentioned steps, you can set a useful plan today to increase energy efficiency. These steps should be a mix-up of HVAC energy efficiency steps and quick fixes. You have to choose wisely which of the above steps suits you best.