Increasing Fuel Prices Require Increased Creativity

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fuel, gas, gas prices, energy use, utility bill, saving money, home expenses


The following is a guest post sponsored by the Energ Group, which specializes in assisting people with additional cost saving measures to help with their energy bills or general energy updates and building management systems. Enjoy! 


Increasing Fuel Prices Requires Increased Creativity


As fuel bills continue to rise, energy efficiency is a vital part of every household budget. The best strategy is to start from the outside and the structure of the house and then work inwards to the fixtures and fittings.

Insulation

The heat in every house rises through the ceiling of a room, into the attic, and out of the roof to the outdoors. Preserve this heat by insulating the attic. Newly built homes will have cavity walls, so ensure that these, as well as the attic in older homes, are well insulated. Use fiberglass  cellulose, or polystyrene as the insulating material, depending on your budget and the shape of the spaces to be insulated.
Double glazed windows are superior insulators to single glazing. If your budget cannot stretch to replacing the windows, make sure that any air spaces or leaks around the windows are well sealed. Curtains are some of the best insulating material for windows. Try to hang some that extend from the floor to the ceiling for the best insulation effect.

Heating

Try replacing your existing heating system with a ground source heat pump. These pumps harness the heat from the earth with a mechanism that operates rather like a fridge in reverse. A network of pipes is buried in the ground to a depth of between four and 100 feet. A mixture of water an anti freeze is pumped through the pipes, warmed by the deep ground temperature, and is pumped back to a domestic heating system. Ground heat pumps use a combination of an evaporator, compressor, and condenser connected to the domestic hot water supply, and heating will increase the temperature to about 48 degrees C. This heat is sufficient to use in radiators, hot water systems, and under floor heating.
Meanwhile, turn down the thermostats on your heating and hot water systems. You always need far less heat than you imagine. There is little purpose in having scalding hot water coming out from a tap. If you have a hot water tank, make sure it is properly insulated.

Fixtures

Replace incandescent light bulbs with LED lights. LED lights have between four and 20 times the lifetime of both incandescent bulbs and compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). They do not shatter to pieces and do not produce poisonous mercury vapor like the CFLs.
Throw away old electric appliances. These eat up more energy than you may calculate. If you are keeping party food in an old fridge for another occasion, you’ll probably save more money by buying a fresh supply. The best rule is to have just one fridge in the house but make sure you have the most energy efficient model. Also, work out the configuration of your fridge and freezer. It can be more energy efficient to have a freezer incorporated into the fridge rather than a stand alone freezing cabinet. It may be worth calculating just how much food you need to keep frozen and how much you can buy fresh day to day.
Always turn off electrical appliances when they are not in use. A television or computer on stand by uses as much electricity as when it is functioning.

How about you all? What strategies do you use to save some money on your energy bills? 

Share your experiences by commenting below!

    ***Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/gavinmusic/39529798/sizes/l/in/photostream/

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