According to the US Department of Energy, a typical American family spends nearly $2000 per year on their home energy bill. What a lot of families don’t know is that you could save a lot of money by just doing a few minor repairs. Here’s a list of 5 DIY projects you can do over weekend to save yourself some extra cash.
- Taking a super hot shower after being out in the cold is one of the best feelings during the colder months. Trust me, I enjoy it as much as you do! But one of the simplest ways to reduce your energy bill is by turning down your water heater temperature. Many manufacturers set the thermostats at 140℉ but a regular household only really needs it at 120℉. Only taking about 2 hours to complete, lowering your water heater temperature will save you approximately $12-$30 annually for each 10℉ reduction.
- Know how when you wrap yourself in blankets you stay warm? Well, the same concept applies to your water tank. By insulating your water tank, you can put $20-$45 back in your pocket each year. Pre-cut jackets and blankets can be purchased from your local hardware store, and the installation will only take about 1.5 hours.
- Instead of replacing old windows, a very cost effective way to save on your home heating costs is by installing exterior storm windows with a low-emissivity coating. Coated with an ultra-thin, virtually invisible layer of metal, low-e windows reflect infrared heat back into the home. The installation will take about 20-30 minutes per window and will save you 12%-30% on your annual energy bill.
- Air leaks are the easiest way that your home loses heat. Windows and doors are the biggest culprits. An easy way to fix this problem is by sealing cracks and gaps with a substance called caulk. An average tube of white latex window and door caulk will cost around $2, and you’ll need about half a cartridge per window or door. The results will save you approximately 5-10% each year.
- Weatherstripping is another way that you can seal air leaks around movable joints, such as windows and doors. Choose weatherstripping based on your home’s location and the types of conditions that your windows will have to withstand. Also saving you around 5-10% on your energy bill annually, this project shouldn’t take you any longer than an hour.
Although all of these projects are small and save you little amounts here and there, when you add it all up, as well as being more mindful of how you use water and appliances, you can save hundreds of dollars on your annual energy bill. It’s that easy!
For a step-to-step guide and more information about these particular DIY projects, visit the US Department of Energy’s website here.