The Bill-Cutting Magic of Tidying Up Your Home's Energy Waste
World-famous organizing expert Marie Kondo and her new Netflix show “Tidying Up” have inspired many to declutter their homes and lives. But tidying up doesn’t just apply to your clothes and belongings. While Kondo provides advice on straightening out your room, here are some tips on how to tidy up your energy use:
- Change out your lightbulbs. LED lights use at least 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs, and last 25 times longer! If you’ve still got incandescent bulbs in your home, it’s time to do as Marie would: thank them for their service and let them go.
- Reduce your standby power. If an appliance or device is switched off but still plugged in to your home, it may still continue to use power, known as standby or vampire energy, which can account for up to 10 percent of your household’s electric bill. While you purge your belongings of what you don’t need, consider adding a power strip to the list of things you do need. Flipping the power strip off while you’re not using the devices will reduce the standby power of all items plugged into the strip.
- Clean out your dryer. To trim energy spent on cleaning your clothes, make sure to clean out the dryer lint screen, screen slot, and dryer vent to ensure proper air circulation and efficient drying. Cleaning the lint screen before every load of laundry can save an average of $34 annually.
- Get rid of drafts. Ask yourself, “do cold drafts of air in the middle of winter spark joy for me?” We’re pretty sure we know the answer. Identifying and addressing air leakage is a smart way to keep your home warm and cut down on energy costs spent on heating. Caulking, weather-stripping, and other approaches can help save households hundreds of dollars on energy annually.
With these simple tips, you will be well on your way to tidying your home’s energy waste – and trimming your energy bills!