How making your home energy efficient can save you big this summer
With Environment Canada predicting a warm to hot summer for most of North America it’s not just your thermostat that could see a spike this summer; your energy bill is also at risk if you’re running your air conditioner.
But saving money can be easy. All you have to do is make a few changes around the house that will not only benefit the environment, but also your wallet.
Unplug your appliances
You might not notice it, but small appliances like your toaster and microwave are zapping energy when you’re not using them. Natural Resources Canada suggests people unplug as many appliances and devices as they can, a small change could save you $50 a year.
Use natural light
On those days when you’re spending time at home, turning off your lights is a simple way to save some kilowatts. The longer days mean you can let the sun brighten your home well into the night. If that’s not enough, consider changing to energy efficient lightbulbs. Some use up to 90 per cent less energy than incandescent ones.
Use cold water and air dry your clothes
When doing your laundry, wash your clothes in cold water then opt for air drying your items on a clothesline or a drying rack. Ninety per cent, so switching to cold H20 can save you up to $30 a year. Air drying four out of eight loads per week could save you $45 per year!
Look for ENERGY STAR
ENERGY STAR is the mark of high-efficiency products in Canada. An ENERGY STAR certification means the product is in the top 15 to 30 per cent of its class for efficiency. The stamp can be found on everything from dishwashers to air conditioners.
One such example is the Mr. Slim by Mitsubishi Electric, an ENERGY STAR certified heating and cooling system that uses heat pump technology and the weather outside to its advantage.
So how does it work? A heat pump works two ways and has the same basic principle for both. It has an outdoor unit and an indoor unit with two small refrigerant pipes connecting between the two.
On cold days, it absorbs the heat energy from outside and uses a liquid refrigerant to compress it to a higher temperature to heat indoors, so that for every 1kw of power used, it creates an average of 4kw of heat. This can save you up to 50 per cent on your energy bill. Working like an air conditioner on warm days, the heat pump takes heat from inside the home and transfers it outside.
What sets the Mr. Slim by Mitsubishi Electric apart is that it uses patented flash injection technology so it can lower the refrigerant’s temperature below extreme subzero temperatures, which allows it to absorb more heat. It also uses VCSi technology so that it maintains a constant room temperature by adjusting its compressor’s speed when needed instead of shutting on and off completely. So, if you need to cool your house down quickly, it speeds up its compressor to get to that temperature and then slows down to maintain it, only using a minimum amount of energy to keep your house cool. As an added benefit, whether you use a single-split or a multi-split system you can achieve different temperatures in different rooms depending on the level of comfort required.
Making some of these short-and long-term changes will not only help save you money but also bring you a peace of mind that you’re helping the environment at the same time.
For more information on Mr. Slim visit: www.mrslim.ca