Public awareness about going green has never been greater, and the world is better because of it. Many of us do what we can to conserve, whether it’s reusing and recycling, carpooling, or driving fuel-efficient cars. But if you’re looking to do even more, a recent guest post on Wise Bread by Dealnews looks at seven items in your home that may be secretly sucking up energy — and draining your wallet in the process.
- Old refrigerators. New refrigerators are generally more energy-efficient. If you’re using an old unit, chances are it’s using more energy than necessary. The long-term savings will almost certainly make buying a new fridge worth the cost.
- Old freezers. The same principle about refrigerators applies here — and there’s a decent chance you’re not using the freezer in your garage or your basement to its full potential. Think about upgrading to a more energy-friendly model, or getting rid of it.
- Clothes dryers. This appliance is generally the second most energy-costly item in a household, according to the California Energy Commission. It might not make sense to get rid of your dryer, but using a clothesline during the more temperate months will save energy and money. And you just might become addicted to the special smell and feel of clothes dried outdoors.
- Space heaters. These small appliances don’t use too much electricity on their own — but factor in multiple units, and the probability that they run for hours on end throughout the winter, and you have an energy vampire. Next winter, consider investing in a model with a timer — or dressing in warmer clothing and doing without.
- Televisions. Many of us keep our TV sets on even when we’re not paying attention to them. But many TV sets aren’t energy-efficient. While the background noise may feel comforting, break this bad habit and turn off the TV when you’re not watching it.
- Personal computers and monitors. Wise Bread calculates that a computer left on for eight hours a day adds up to $60 worth of energy usage in a year. Is it worth wasting natural resources just to watch your screensaver from across the room? Consider shutting down your computer during extended periods between use.
- Swimming-pool pumps. If you own a pool, you know how the costs of maintenance can add up. One way to reduce them, as noted in a study Wise Bread cites, is to invest in a smaller pool pump and run it for shorter periods, which can lead to a 75 percent reduction in energy costs over the course of a year.
Saving $60 a year on your annual energy bill might not seem like much. But every smart saver knows how those little things add up. And of course, taking better care of the environment and conserving energy will pay off for everyone.
Do any items hog energy in your household? What other ways do you save energy?