Where Your Home Energy Dollar Goes

Ever wondered where your energy dollars go in your home? Understanding this can help you focus on the areas that will give you the biggest bang for your buck in reducing your home energy bill. Let’s break down a typical home’s energy usage to see where you can make the most impactful changes.

Heating and Cooling: The Biggest Energy Consumers
As you can see from the pie chart below, space heating and air conditioning together account for almost half of the energy used in a typical home. This is why we always remind you to do tasks like changing your air filters, adding or checking the weather stripping, and getting your annual furnace and AC tune-ups done. These tasks help reduce your heating and cooling costs, which take the biggest bite out of your energy budget.

Hot Water: A Significant Slice
Next, you’ll notice that a typical home uses 14% of its energy for making hot water. This is why we remind you of tasks like getting your annual service done on your water heater, backflushing your water heater, considering adding low-flow showerheads, and promptly fixing plumbing leaks. These steps can significantly reduce your hot water energy usage and save you money.

Refrigeration: Always On
Your refrigerator runs 24-7, adding up to 8% of your household energy bill. To keep your refrigerator efficient, we recommend vacuuming the dust off your refrigerator coils and checking the seals around the door for air leaks. Keeping your refrigerator in top shape can help reduce its energy consumption.

Vampire Power: The Silent Drainers
Have you ever heard of “vampire power” sources that suck electricity even when appliances are turned off? Computers and televisions are notorious for this. If you have a digital video recorder (DVR) box, it’s one of the worst culprits. Using digital timers or programmable wireless outlet remote controls can help manage these energy vampires and cut down on unnecessary electricity use.

Lighting: Bright Ideas for Savings
Lighting accounts for 6% of home energy use. Switching to more efficient compact fluorescent (CFL) and LED lights can make a significant difference. These lights use less energy and last longer, saving you money on both your energy bill and replacement costs.

Appliances: Small but Mighty
While individual appliances like your clothes dryer may only account for 5% of your energy bill, they still offer opportunities for savings. Regular maintenance, like cleaning the lint filter and ensuring proper ventilation, can keep your dryer running efficiently.

By understanding where your energy dollars go, you can prioritize tasks that will have the greatest impact on reducing your home energy bill. Simple actions like maintaining your HVAC system, servicing your water heater, keeping your refrigerator efficient, managing vampire power, and using energy-efficient lighting can add up to substantial savings. Make these tasks part of your regular home maintenance routine, and you’ll see the benefits on your next energy bill.

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