Habitat Homer’s Home Tips: Energy Efficiency in the Home

by Margie Olivares


Bexar County, along with a few adjacent counties (Bandera, Comal, Guadalupe Atascosa, Medina, Wilson and Kendall) all face an impending utility rate increase. A decision approved by the CPS Energy Board was passed by the San Antonio City Council on an 8-3 decision on Thursday, January 13. The rate increase agreed upon was by 3.85%, boosting customers’ monthly bills by an average of $5 starting in March. Making your home efficient could save you tons.

Energy-Efficient Tips & Tricks

  • Use LED light bulbs throughout your home.
    • These light bulbs use up to 90% less power and last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs.
  • Get detailed data on your home’s use by installing a whole-house energy monitoring system.
    • They also help you understand when and where you use the most power.
    • Install one to help you develop your own strategies to be more efficient.
  • Purchase energy-efficient electric space heaters and coolers, water pumps, and appliances that are Energy Star efficient. Check the label on these items.
  • Reduce the number of appliances that are ‘always-on’.
    • Unplug any appliances and electronics not in use if possible.
  • Use advanced power strips to plug in your appliances and electronics. Reduce the amount of electricity wasted while not in use.
  • Install/use a programmable thermostat.
    • Turn back the thermostat overnight or when nobody is home. Save around 10% or more a year on heating and cooling costs.
  • Check home for air leaks.
    • Seal and insulate the foundation walls of any unventilated crawl spaces and check for moisture and deterioration.
    • Check the attic for proper insulation!
  • Visit Energy.gov to calculate your annual electricity consumption and costs with their Appliance Energy Calculator
  • Check with your local energy company for rebates on upgrades

For more information on ways to reduce your costs, visit Energy.gov/energysaver or contact your local utility company for more information. To learn more about the homes Habitat builds visit the ‘About our houses‘ page.


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