Upgrade Your Appliances For An Energy-Efficient Home (And Save $$ Too!)

Recent environmental reports show that the world's need for energy has increased significantly-but the available fuel sources for energy continue to decline. In fact, other reports found that in the US, citizens waste between 60 and 70 percent of the available energy.

Additionally, US residents and citizens spend more than $100 billion annually to pay for this wasted energy. The need for energy will continue to rise, and the available fuel sources will continue to sink. So what can you do to reduce the amount of energy your home wastes?

If you want to reduce the amount of fuel sources you consume and lower your utility bills, read on. In this blog, we list a few home appliances you can upgrade to make your home more energy efficient.

As you strive to reduce your impact on the environment, consider upgrading the following appliances in your home. You'll be surprised just how big an impact this change can have on your life, your wallet, and the environment.

Ceiling Fans
When you think of home appliances, you likely don't think of your ceiling fans. However, these features can reduce your energy consumption in a number of ways.

For example, on a hot summer day, you may consider turning on your air conditioner. Depending on how cold you want your home, you may turn the thermostat down to 65 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. But the lower you set the thermostat, the more your air conditioner must run to keep the house cool-and the higher your energy consumption becomes.

However, if you use ceiling fans, you can move that cool air throughout your home. As more cold air moves throughout your house, you may find that you won't have to turn down the thermostat as much. This fact rings just as true in the winter, since you can reverse the flow of your fan to circulate warm air through your home.

Additionally, if you upgrade your ceiling fan to an energy-efficient model, you ensure that your home stays at a comfortable temperature without wasting as much energy as it did before.

Dishwashers are some of the biggest culprits for wasted energy. If you want to make your home more efficient, an energy-efficient dishwasher is your best resource. The appliance will use less water and energy to get your dishes clean.

But if you don't use your dishwasher properly, you could still needlessly waste water and energy. Make sure to fill your dishwasher up completely before you run a cycle. Running the appliance when it's only half full causes you to run more loads of dirty dishes. As a result, you'll waste more water and electricity.

You rely on your fridge to preserve your perishable foods. But if you have a fridge that is more than 10 years old, the appliance is likely a source of your home's energy waste. As fridges (and other appliances) age, they can't run as efficiently as newer models.

If you notice any of the following signs, you should replace your fridge:

  • Rapidly spoiling food
  • Condensation
  • Ice buildup
  • Clanking, chugging, or other unusual noises
  • Hot motor

Additionally, the fridge's design can affect how much energy it uses. For example, fridges that have bottom freezers use up to 25 percent more energy than fridges with top freezers. And refrigerators with built-in icemakers use an additional 20 percent more energy than other models. You'll also want to purchase a smaller fridge if possible, as the smaller appliances use less energy than larger alternatives.

Talk to an appliance expert to see which energy-efficient refrigerators can provide you with the size and features your home needs.

HVAC Units
As previously mentioned, you use your air conditioner or heater to regulate your home's internal temperature. But if you have old, worn, or breaking-down appliances, your home is likely wasting more energy than necessary.

Rather than upgrade your HVAC units to newer models, invest in energy-efficient models. These units can better control your home's inside temperature while using minimal fuel sources to run. If you want to further enhance your HVAC units' energy efficiency, make sure to clean and maintain all of their components, including the ducts, vents, and thermostat.

Ready to make your home more energy efficient? As you renovate your home or make upgrades, be sure to replace your old appliances with energy-efficient models, such as those listed above. You'll reduce the amount of energy you home uses, lower your monthly utility bills, and preserve the environment with just a few small changes.

Not sure which models specifically work for your needs and budget? Call HomeSmart from Xcel Energy and ask to speak with one of our sales professionals for a free estimate on new energy-efficient HVAC equipment in your home.  Additionally, Xcel Energy offers Home Energy Audits that can show you ways to save money in your home by pointing out energy inefficiencies throughout the house.  Together, these professionals can provide you with adept advice and tell you what appliances will suit your home best.

For additional information about how to make your home more energy efficient, read through the rest of our blog. Don't forget to check back regularly for more updates and tips! 

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