Spring cleaning is an annual tradition practiced by many. Did you know that it can help you save energy and reduce your impact on the environment? While you’re chasing those dust bunnies around, consider the following tips to make your home more energy-efficient.
- Redirect Ceiling Fans. Flip that switch while you’re dusting to send your fan counterclockwise so you’re not wasting that much-needed A/C in the summer.
- Vacuum Refrigerator Coils. Have you looked behind your refrigerator lately? Make sure to dust that build-up on refrigerator coils. The dust forces the fridge to work harder to keep things cold, so it’s worth a few minutes to wipe it down.
- Change Air Conditioning Filters. While you’re wiping down your vents, take a few extra minutes to check out your filters. If you can’t remember the last time you changed them, take the time to do it now. Not only will it improve air quality, but it will make sure your system isn’t wasting energy. Changing air filters bi-monthly is a good rule of thumb to save on energy costs.
- Clean Exhaust Fans. Bathroom exhaust fans can collect a buildup of dust. We recommend a good cleaning once a year to keep them running efficiently. Kitchen hood exhaust fans should also be cleaned at least once a year and can be a little more complex, so we recommend referring to the model-specific documentation whenever possible. If you don’t have your fan’s original manual, look for a label with a model number to help you look this information up online.
- Electronics. While you’re dusting your TV, computer, and other home electronics, take a look at how they’re plugged in. You can stop overpaying to power these big energy users by plugging them into an advanced power strip, which automatically cuts electricity to any idle equipment you choose.
- Lights. You can really “clean up” by replacing incandescent light bulbs with ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs, which use about 80% less energy for lighting.
- Outdoor vents. Take a look at any accessible exterior vents, such as for a clothes dryer, heating system, water heater, kitchen fan exhaust, or bath fan exhaust. Clear them of any dust, webs, leaves, and lint.
- Inspect Sliding Doors. If your home has a sliding glass door, take a few minutes to get all the grit and grime out of the track. The buildup can ruin the door’s seal and create gaps where heat or cold air can escape.