There are many good reasons to upgrade your home’s electrical system. Maybe you have an outdated system and the wiring isn’t up to code. Maybe you want to add more outlets or switches, or maybe you need an upgraded panel to handle all the new appliances and electronics you want to buy.
Whatever your reasons may be, there are some money-saving upgrades you can make when it comes to your home’s electricity. Here are four of our favorites:
1. Upgrade Your Outlets and Switches
If you have old two-prong outlets, it’s time to upgrade them to three-prong outlets. Not only are they safer, but they also allow you to use more powerful appliances without fear of blowing a fuse. You can also save money by upgrading your switches to dimmers or occupancy sensors.
An experienced electrician in Austin notes that these controls let you control lights remotely and help save money by turning them on only when needed. For newer homes, it’s also worth installing an advanced power meter, which allows you to see your electricity usage in real-time and make changes to your habits accordingly.
2. Replace Incandescent Light Bulbs With CFLs or LEDs
Replacing old, inefficient light fixtures with new, more efficient ones can save you a lot of money in the long run. Not only will they use less energy, but they’ll also last longer. If you have incandescent light bulbs in your home, replacing them with CFLs or LEDs can save you up to 75% on your energy bill.
ou can easily change the lighting fixtures in your home so you can start saving money right away. Start with the rooms in your home that are used the most and replace all of those bulbs at once to maximize your savings. If replacing light fixtures isn’t an option, consider adding dimmer switches or lower-use lights such as lamps.
3. Upgrade Your Circuit Breakers and Fuse Boxes
If your home is more than a few years old, there’s a good chance that your circuit breakers and fuse boxes are no longer up to code. Upgrading to modern equipment can save you money on your electric bill by preventing blown fuses and overloaded circuits. Upgrading to a smart breaker box or panel will:
- Allow you to control your home’s energy consumption with ease
- Eliminate problems with burnt out appliances and flickering lights
- Allow you to add more electrical appliances without blowing fuses, tripping your breaker, or damaging current appliances
- Allow you to benefit from fewer power surges
- Add more years of life to your electrical equipment and devices
4. Unplug Electronics and Get Rid of Old Appliances
You can also save energy costs by unplugging your electronics when they’re not in use. A typical home has more than $100 worth of standby power loss per year from devices left plugged into wall outlets. Even though you may be switching off certain devices at night or when you go on vacation, there may still be power running to them because they are plugged into an outlet.
Most of these devices continue using energy even after being turned off and disconnected from a wall socket. If you have old electronics, consider replacing them if they’re not energy efficient or have less than optimal features. Get energy-efficient electronics. You’ll cut down on utility costs and save money while doing it.
Consult a Professional Electrician for More Options
Most homeowners aren’t aware of the many other energy-efficient upgrades available to save money. A professional electrician will evaluate your home’s electrical system and existing appliances and make recommendations specific to your home that could save you even more money in the long run.
Go ahead and ask about “smart” thermostats, LED light bulbs, high-efficiency heaters, power strips, and home automation. By saving money on energy costs in your home, you also get to reduce your carbon footprint and help save the planet at the same time.