DIY Renewable Energy Ideas to Save You Money Posted on 19 Jan 13:11
Even with the historically low cost of DIY renewable energy systems — not to mention how much you save by installing the system yourself — you likely are interested in saving even more money.
To help you keep your costs low and save as much energy as possible, consider implementing some or all of the strategies we have outlined below. They’re simple and often take only a little extra time or effort.
Tips to Lower Home Heating Costs
Heating your home consumes a large portion of your energy budget every year. Fortunately, it’s also an area where making small changes can save you big.
Use these tips to lower your energy bills even further, or simply to be more self-sustaining:
Cover your bare floors. While the look of wood and tile floors is nice, these hard surfaces provide little to hold onto precious heat. Remedy this by adding a few throw rugs or area rugs during the winter, especially if your floors aren’t well insulated.
If you have carpeting in your home, consider switching it out for hard-surface floors. As poorly as hard surfaces hold the heat, carpet holds heat extremely well, which will increase your AC costs in the summer. Simply remove the area rugs come summertime, and you’ll save money all year long!
- Lower the thermostat. For every degree you can lower the heat, the more money you will save. Increase your comfort by dressing in layers and keeping your socks on in the house. Use space heaters to increase the comfort of the rooms you’re in, rather than heating the entire house.
- Change heating system filters often. Your heater doesn’t have to work as hard if you put in a clean filter. This not only saves energy, but extends the life of your HVAC equipment too!
Save Money on Home Lighting
Let there be light! (But let it be inexpensive!)
You can save both energy and money by adopting these simple strategies for lighting your home:
- Use CFL (compact fluorescent) or LED (light emitting diode) bulbs, rather than incandescent bulbs. They are more efficient, last longer, and provide the same quality and quantity of light as the old-fashioned energy-guzzling bulbs. |
- Make sure you’re using the right size and type of lightbulb for your fixtures.
- Recycle your CFL bulbs — this makes it cheaper for everyone!
- Turn off the lights. As simple as this sounds, most people waste lots of money each year on lighting.
- Implement task lighting. If you only need to light your desk or a small area of the room, use task lighting rather than fixtures that illuminate the entire space.
Reduce the High Cost of Using Home Appliances
You don’t have to buy the latest and greatest appliances to save on energy costs. (Although if you have an appliance made before 1990, you’ll save money and energy by replacing it with a new, energy-efficient model!)
Either way, try these tips to save even more when using your home appliances:
- Use toasters, toaster ovens and slow cookers as often as possible. These mighty-mites use a fraction of the energy that ranges and ovens do. In fact, cut out as much microwave use as possible, and you’ll save even more.
- Set your fridge temperature between 32 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep a thermometer inside both the refrigerator and freezer to monitor the temperature. It may be possible to keep your temperature even higher if your appliance’s thermometer is off by even a degree or two.
- Dry your clothes outside when it’s nice, and buy drying racks for inside in the winter. If you dislike the stiffness that can come with air drying, toss your laundry in the dryer for a quick tumble to soften them up.
- Grill outside more often. Although most people don’t need an excuse to do so, it saves energy and keeps your house cooler during the summer.
Don’t Forget the Windows
You can lose a ton of energy through and around your windows.
You can save money and energy with these tips:
- Replace old windows. Installing energy-efficient windows can save hundreds of dollars each year in home heating and cooling costs. Check to see if your local utility company, city or state offers rebates to help offset the cost.
- Add energy-efficient window coverings. Use high-performance, solar window screens, thermal coatings or specialty window shades or blinds to prevent heat transference.
- Add energy-efficient architectural elements to your home. Shutters, awnings and sunshades can keep the heat out during the summer and retract during the colder months to allow the sun to warm your home naturally.
By making even a few of these simple changes, you can dramatically decrease your home’s energy needs.
If you’re ready to add solar to your home, Solar GOODs has all the PV panels and accessories you need to install the system yourself. Visit our online superstore today and make this the year you incorporate DIY renewable energy into your life.