Does your monthly energy bills keep going up? From warming or cooling your home to using computers and drying your clothes, you’re probably using a ton of energy in your in Mount Juliette, Tennessee, home. Here are six ways households waste energy and how you can save on energy costs while protecting the environment.

Leaving the Lights On

Leaving the lights on wastes energy. Luckily it is one of the easiest habits to fix. By turning them off when leaving rooms, you save energy; your light bulbs will also last longer. Break the habit of leaving lights on by using natural light as much as possible and only switching on electrical lighting when you really need it.

Remember, using old-fashioned light bulbs produce heat, which is the last thing you need in your house on a hot summers day. Incandescent lights use an enormous amount of energy. Switch to ENERGY STAR bulbs that use less energy and last up to 25 times longer.

Not Changing Air Filters

As the HVAC runs, air particles are trapped in the filter. The dirtier the filter is, the harder the system must work. Once the air filter is clogged, your HVAC uses more energy to pull air through. If you can’t remember to check and change the air filters, set a reminder on your smartphone.

If you have a pet, the air filters will need to be changed more regularly. Normally, air filters need to be changed every 45 to 60 days. But with a furry friend in the home, you should think about changing the air filter every 30 days.

Unplug Appliances and Electronics

Electronics and appliances use energy, even when they are off. One of the easiest ways to reduce energy waste is to literally pull the plug on "device vampires" when they are turned off. Turn off electronics — such as your computer, phone charger, printer, central heating furnaces, routers, and televisions — when you are not using them. When multiple electronics are connected to a power strip, it is easier to switch them all off when they are not in use.

Leaving the Fridge Door Open

You waste energy when you stand and stare into the fridge. The cold air used to keep your food fresh gets warmer when the fridge door is open, which makes your fridge work hard to maintain its ideal temperature. Think about what you want in the fridge before you open the door, then grab what you need and shut the door quickly.

Using the Dishwasher for a Half Load

On average, your dishwasher uses around 1,800 watts of energy to run. Cut down on energy waste by only using it when it is full. You can also set it to air dry instead of heat dry to save energy. Better yet, wash smaller dish loads by hand.

Not Setting your Thermostat

HVAC systems consume about half of your home’s energy. Opt for a programmable thermostat that can help to cut down on energy waste when you aren’t at home. A smart thermostat is also more energy efficient and can be controlled remotely. Determine your preferred temperature and set the thermostat to energy-saving mode when you are not at home.

Yes, we need electricity to live comfortably, but there are many simple ways to cut energy, improve your home’s sustainability, and save money while still enjoying a good life. Why don’t you try to apply one or two of these small changes from the above list? You’ll love seeing your savings piles up.

If you want to learn more about how to cut your home’s energy costs, Bentley’s Air Conditioning at 615-206-3318. One of our service technicians will be more than happy to answer all of your questions.

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