Residential dwellings are a significant contributor to the harmful greenhouse gases that threaten our environment. Our home appliances require large amounts of energy to function on a day-to-day basis. This is especially true of HVAC systems which use a good portion of the power in your home. In order to reduce our carbon footprint, we must look to reduce our power usage in as many ways as possible.
Not only will efforts to reduce energy consumption save you money on your utility bill, but they will help protect the environment in which we all live. There are many measures you can take to lower energy use and costs, but one of the simplest is to invest in energy efficient appliances wherever possible in your home. You can also review this catalogue of HVAC articles to get more helpful info about your HVAC system and related topics.
How Energy Efficient Appliances Reduce Greenhouse Emissions
Greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide absorb infrared radiation that traps and contains the heat in the atmosphere, resulting in increased warmth from the planet’s surface. The more greenhouse gases that are leached into the air, the more warmth is created. This drives the global warming that causes climate change.
When we burn fossil fuels to create electricity, the combustion releases carbon dioxide. This mixes with other greenhouse gases and creates a layer that pulls in solar radiation and prevents it from reflecting back toward the surface of Earth. Instead, it is trapped to create global warming. So, every bit of energy you use in your home contributes to this layer. The less you use, the less you contribute.
Water Saving Appliances
Water is a necessity for all humans. Not only must it be conserved wherever possible, but it must be protected against pollution so that it is safe for use and consumption. When you use appliances that consume less water and energy, you are helping to prevent greenhouse gases and with water conservation. Not only does this reduce your utility and water bills, but it also helps ensure there is plenty of usable water for years to come.
With the cost of utilities rising every year, especially during the peak demand months of summer and winter, saving energy should be a goal everyone works toward. Energy-efficient appliances like HVAC systems, water heaters, stoves, washers, and dryers can passively help you do your part for your back pocket and the environment while also saving water.
Other Energy Saving Measures
While energy-saving appliances are a big help, there are other ways in which you can save energy, as well. One simple way to save energy is to simply replace those old incandescent light bulbs in your light fixtures and lamps. LED or CFL bulbs can save up to half the costs of what you were paying with incandescent bulbs on your monthly electricity bill.
You can also wash your clothes in cold water whenever possible, saving the energy it takes to heat water. Not only will this save electricity, but it will also protect the color from fading and the fabric from added wear and tear.
Carbon Footprint Reduction
We hear a lot of information about our carbon footprint, but how many really know what this means? In simplest terms, your carbon footprint is the number of carbon compounds emitted during the consumption of fossil fuels. The more energy used in your household, businesses, and other industries, the higher the carbon footprint of humans. Carbon compounds such as carbon dioxide, CFCs, and methane contribute greatly to climate change.
Every step you take toward reducing this carbon footprint by using energy-efficient appliances, taking other energy-saving measures, and being more conscientious of the chemicals you are putting out into the atmosphere helps reduce the harm being done to the environment. In reducing your energy consumption, you are not only helping yourself but every living thing on the planet.
According to leading experts, research shows that reducing our carbon footprint and greenhouse gases helps our physical health as much as our environmental health. Air pollution has a dire effect on health. Reduction of environmental pollutants of all kinds can help prevent premature deaths due to environmental factors.
Advantages of Energy-Efficient Appliances
If you have older appliances in your home, upgrading to more modern energy-efficient appliances adds more benefits other than just lowered utility bills and reduced energy consumption. You will save time previously lost to repeated service calls for your tired old appliances. You may also find that newer appliances possess a functionality not available in their predecessors.
With the recent switch to smart electronics, there are many features found in newer model appliances that weren’t available ten or even five years ago. Upgrading can provide you with appliances more in tune with your lifestyle. Programmable thermostats that allow you to adjust the temperature in your home remotely or set schedules for changes can greatly increase your comfort and energy savings.
The bells and whistles found on many modern appliances can save you money, and effort and increase your peace of mind. Smart bulbs that turn off and on based on a schedule can save money and create the appearance that you are home when you are on vacation and don’t want potential intruders aware of your absence. They also increase the life of the bulbs themselves.
Older washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, and refrigerators weren’t built with the environment in mind and though they may have been considered the best on the energy-efficient market back when they were purchased, newer technology has rendered many of them ineffective in providing their services at a premium level. Additionally, wear and tear may have reduced the efficiency they once possessed.
While it is not reasonable to expect households to go out and replace all their appliances at once to reduce their carbon footprint, it is something that everyone should be looking at as they consider their options. If you are looking at an appliance that costs $500 more than one that is less energy efficient, but the purchase of the more costly model will save you $800 over the next year and even more in the years that follow, then it is money well spent.
The Bottom Line
When all is said and done, saving money and energy efficiency go hand in hand. Spending a bit more to purchase HVAC systems and appliances that save you money in the long run and provide you with more convenience and comfort are a win-win for you and the environment.