Every year, the U.S. Department of Energy celebrates October National Energy Awareness Month. During this month, schools and parents teach children about energy efficiency and plan energy-saving educational activities. This is also a great time to be more energy-aware in your home and daily life.
From big changes like switching to solar to smaller habit adjustments like turning off lights when you leave a room, there are plenty of ways you can conserve energy throughout October Energy Awareness Month and all year.
Explore our top tips for saving energy in your home, your workplace, and throughout your daily life. Although October is Energy Awareness Month, you can use these energy-saving tips to reduce your carbon footprint and save on your electricity bills at any time of year.
About Energy Awareness Month
October is awareness month for energy, focusing on energy savings and an understanding of how much energy we use in our daily lives. Federal organizations like the U.S. Department of Energy and the Energy Information Administration encourage Americans to pay attention to their energy usage and find ways to conserve energy in their homes and workplaces. By working together and each of us doing our part, we can combat the effects of climate change and help make our planet a little healthier.
Take Advantage of Home Automation
As technology continues to advance, more and more devices can help you automate functions in your home and save energy. Smart power strips allow you to control power to numerous electronics and appliances from your smartphone, while you can avoid unnecessary energy use by programming smart lighting based on the time of day. Explore more home automation options and look for ways you can upgrade your home to conserve energy.
Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat
Speaking of upgrades, a smart thermostat is the best way to control the temperature in your home, keeping you comfortable while saving energy—and reducing your monthly utility bills. While a programmable thermostat is a big step up from a standard model, a smart thermostat can take home climate control to the next level, allowing you to control your home’s temperature from anywhere with a mobile device.
Adjust Your Water Heater
Many water heaters run hotter than they need to, so take time to set yours to the optimal temperature: 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Not only will this conserve energy and save money but turning down your water heater can also prevent the chance of burns. You will still have plenty of hot water in your home when you need it.
Maintain Your HVAC System
Schedule time in the fall to have a professional inspect your heating system for issues that could cause problems later. It’s best to address these problems as early as possible, so you don’t find yourself without a functioning furnace in the cold of winter. Be sure to have your air conditioning unit inspected in the spring before you start needing it in those hot Texas summers.
A small thing to help maintain your heating system is to change the furnace filter every one to three months. Set a reminder in your phone to make sure you never forget and consider purchasing furnace filters in bulk so that you always have some on hand to make the change.
Try Out Task Lighting
Whether you work in an office or at home, task lighting can help you focus and prevent wasted electricity. A small desk lamp directed toward your computer and the task at hand provides you with all the illumination you need and may even help you focus more clearly. So turn off those overhead lights and let smaller lighting do the trick.
Unplug Unused Equipment
Many electronics and small appliances continue to use power, even when turned off or in standby mode. Laptops, TVs, and gaming consoles are some of the biggest “energy vampires,” but even items like electric can openers, toasters, and coffeemakers use electricity when plugged in, even if you only use them once a day. Take time to unplug any electronics or devices when you aren’t actively using them to save energy. Even better, plug multiple offenders, like the television and gaming systems, into a single power strip, so you can easily cut power to all these items with the flip of a switch.
Switch to LED Light Bulbs
Traditional incandescent light bulbs are major energy consumers, and their use can add up, increasing your electric bills. Switch out incandescent bulbs for LED light bulbs wherever you can. Not only are LEDs more energy-efficient, but they last longer, making them a worthwhile—and affordable—upgrade to your home.
Consider Renewable Energy
Take advantage of the many renewable energy benefits and consider adding solar panels to your home. Switching to solar can help you save money on your monthly electricity bills, and some solar energy plans even let you send excess energy your system generates back to the power grid. While solar panels have a significant upfront cost, you can take advantage of financing opportunities that will cover the full initial price, allowing you to enjoy solar energy benefits.
While less common than solar, other renewable energy sources like wind energy help generate clean electricity to power your household and meet your energy needs. Explore the benefits of wind energy.
Choose the Right Electricity Provider
Selecting an energy provider that offers renewable energy in Texas may feel overwhelming, but the right plan can make a huge difference in your energy savings. Learn more about Gexa Energy and their 100% renewable plans from environmentally friendly renewable sources.