4 Smart Moves to Make Now to Boost Your LA Apartment’s Energy Efficiency
Making a few smart moves now can help your LA apartment become more energy efficient in just a short amount of time. This can, in turn, save you money in utility costs — even after you deduct the cost of these upgrades.
1. Take a Fresh Look at Water
What’s something that everyone uses every day, but that often doesn’t get much attention otherwise? If you answered “water,” you’d be right!
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average household in the United States wastes almost 10,000 gallons of water every year because of leaks. Some homes have leaks that waste 90+ gallons of water every day.
Use a smart leak sensor to determine if there are any leaks that need to be fixed. Some examples of good places to place these small smart devices are around your washing machine or water heater, under all the sinks and behind your toilets.
When a leak is detected, the sensor sends you an alert on your smartphone. You’ll be able to either fix the leak yourself or call a plumber before it gets worse.
As an added bonus, you could save as much as 10 percent on your apartment’s water bill just by finding and fixing common household water leaks.
2. Look at the Lights
The lights in your apartment are probably another everyday item you don’t give much thought to. The bulbs you use can help you save energy, money and the planet for very little effort.
By using bulbs with light-emitting diode (LED) technology, you’ll enjoy savings of at least 75 percent compared to traditional incandescent light bulbs. LED bulbs also outlast incandescent ones by 25 times.
Take your investment in new light bulbs one step further and switch to dimmable bulbs. Unlike the rotary dimmers of the past, today’s modern dimmers are designed with switches.
When activated, these switches stop the light bulb from receiving power at an astonishing rate — as much as 120 times every second. At this rapid pace, your brain and eyes don’t recognize that the light is flickering off and on.
However, by simply dimming the lights, you could reduce your electric use over time by 40 percent.
3. Upgrade Your Thermostat
Regardless of the season or the temperature outside, your apartment can benefit from a smart, or programmable, thermostat. While there is a wide range of options available – including basic models that you program at home to those that you can control via an app on your smartphone – the basic idea is the same for them all.
Using a programmable thermostat allows you to set the time of day you want your apartment to be a certain temperature. This means you don’t have to keep your apartment at the same temperature all day and night — even if there is no one at home.
You can program the thermostat, so it goes into energy-saving mode while you’re not home. As the time nears for you to arrive back at your apartment, the thermostat automatically adjusts the temperature to meet your pre-set conditions.
4. Seek Out the Phantoms
Would it surprise you to learn that many of the electrical devices you rely on every day continue to draw out power even when you’re not actively using them? Coffee makers, televisions and computer speakers are just a few examples of the many appliances that keep sapping energy long after you’ve turned them off or finishing using them.
If you’re interested in learning about the amount of energy your appliances are using even where they’re off, consider buying a smart plug. This device gives you real-time feedback about the device’s energy use.
Easily monitor multiple devices, and get individual feedback on each one, by getting a smart power strip instead. Simply decide when you don’t want the device to stop using electricity and the smart plug or smart strip turns it off.
Your LA apartment is more than just a place to rest your head. It’s your oasis within the beautiful and bustling metropolis.
By adopting even just one or two of these ideas can streamline the amount of energy your LA apartment uses. This life is better for the earth, and that you’re saving money in the process.