Energy-Saving Tips

Are you having problems in the continuous spike of your electricity bills? Are you one of those people who think that electricity bills take a humongous portion of your paycheck? If so, perhaps you will benefit greatly on our energy tips.

Electricity can be considered as one of the basic needs nowadays. With the fast improving technology, without it, you’d lag behind. Not only does electricity make your life easier by giving life to the machines that aid your everyday life, it also the most efficient and most developed source of energy. In fact, with the proof lying all around us, it is safe to claim that electricity plays an integral role in our lives. This role came not without a price.

According to the US Department of Energy – Energy Information Administration (EIA) – in 2014, the total ‘average residential monthly is estimated to be $114.09 with Hawaii having the largest monthly bill at $187. 89 and New Mexico having the smallest at $77.79.

Expensive right? Perhaps now you’re already thinking how you managed to accumulate that much amount in your billing statement right now. And you are right. This is the outcome of your electricity usage at home.

Below are tips on how you can save some money in your electric bill and at the same time conserve energy.

  1. Unplug your appliances

You may think that you are already saving electricity when you simply turn off your TVs and computers after use. You’re wrong. Appliances nowadays continue to suck electricity as long as they are plugged in a socket. You may not be aware of it but they may be one of the biggest contributors on your expensive electric bill. Imagine charging it without its capability to store energy for later use. Not only you are throwing away your resource, you’re also wasting your money over something you do not get any benefit from.

The key word is to unplug. Make it a habit to unplug any and every appliances you are not using.  May it be as simple as the coffee maker or the blender, or your entertainment systems and personal computers and gadgets, be sure to remove their connection to the electricity when not in use.


  1. Turn-off lights

Electricity lightens up our lives – literally and figuratively. Light is the most used appliance in anyone’s household.  Light being the first to be sought upon arriving home and the last to be turned off when leaving for work, it becomes one of the largest contributors in our daily electric consumption.

This is the reason why it is a must to turn off all your light sources when not in use. When you have many lights in a room, choose only the one that can best illuminate your task at hand. No need to turn on everything if not needed. Also, you can resort to energy-saving bulbs such as LED and CFL bulbs. Not only do they help you minimize your expenses in electricity, it also performs as well as your current light bulbs and perhaps, even better.


  1. Replace old appliances

Big appliances like refrigerators are energy-hogs especially when they are already a decade or two older. If you think you are saving because you prevent yourself from buying a new one, then maybe you should reconsider.

In a study conducted by the Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances in 2009, it was found out that using decades old refrigerator leads to more than 300% increase in the electric bill than if you’re going to use a new one. Not only that, it also emits more  that could be harmful to the environment as well as to one’s health. Thus, it’s time to perhaps consider throwing our old baggage to make way to new ones.


  1. Improving room Insulation

One of the most energy saving tips is to improve the overall insulation of one’s home. This is most important during the extremes of weather. On a cold day, this prevents you from needing extra help from additional heaters by preventing too much cold from seeping in and on hottest days to help yourself from being roasted in. Sometimes non-stop usage of air conditioning units can rob your pockets dry when the billing day comes.

This extends not only to the inside of your homes but to your garages as well. A well insulated garage helps you maintain an ideal temp for your homes.

A1 Garage Door Service of Peoria for instance offers great deals in installing garage doors insulations. Not only are they experts in all your garage doors need, you can also be assured to get the quality service you deserve. They are a family-owned company that has been in the industry since 2006, with a reputation of technicians that underwent rigorous trainings and backgrounds checked. Their credibility is further proved by being a recipient of the Super Service Award from Angie’s List, the Yelp 5-Star Rating as well as an A+ from BBB. You can be assured that they are on the top of their game.

A1 Garage Door Service offers an array of materials that will be the answer for your garage door insulation needs. They provide also cost estimates for free plus there is a guarantee that your product is under warranty – sometimes even lifetime warranties.

Follow these energy-saving tips and help lessen your monthly electric bills.


Top 4 housekeeping tips for getting a sparkling home

If you want your house to be all sparkle and shine, then you need to concentrate on housekeeping works. In this busy world, we need to work smarter to make time for our housekeeping works. Here are some tips for you.


Clothes can remove dust, but feather duster works best. These dusters are efficient for dusting pictures, blinds, and hard to reach areas. These are good for routing and quick dusting. If there is heavy dust build up, you need to vacuum or use cloth.


Get shiny stainless steel

Stainless steel looks beautiful and stain-resistant. But it also shows smudges and fingerprints quickly. You can pour mineral oil on a cloth and wipe it across the surface. Mineral oil repels water and improves resistance. It prevents sticky materials from attaching to the steel.

Remove smells from disposal

To remove smells add orange or lemon peels down the sink. Run the disposal for 15 minutes and then drop some ice cubes. Then fill the sink to half by putting on the stopper, then drain off the water. This way you will be able to get rid of any smell.


You must vacuum your carpet regularly. The modern vacuum cleaner has many extensions that you can use to clean hard to access areas.


The trick to good housekeeping is cleaning the house every day. That way, dust won’t build up, and it will take less time to clean the house. It will also keep away germs and keep you and your family healthy.

5 best countertops for your kitchen

If you are thinking of replacing a scratched, stained or an unattractive countertop, then you need to find out the best countertops that are available today for your kitchen. Here is a list of countertops for your kitchen.

1. Quartz

It looks like stone but needs less maintenance. You can get quartz in vibrant colors and patterns that look like marble or granite. One disadvantage of this material is that the edges and corners of quartz countertops may chip, and you will need a professional to fix it. If you buy countertops with rounded edges, then you will be able to overcome this problem. The cost of quartz countertop will be $2,240 to $5,600.

2. Granite

Every slab of granite is unique. It comes with rare colors, and so costs more. Granite won’t get damaged due to cuts, heat or scratches. The edges of these countertops can chip and so you will need a professional to fix the problem. The cost of granite countertop will be $2,240 to $5,600.

3. Marble, Soapstone, and limestone

Soapstone is great at resisting heat damage. You can repair small scratches by applying mineral oil. Limestone has a natural stone look without heavy graining. It resists heat. Soapstone cuts and scratches easily. It is sometimes difficult to remove the stains. Heat can damage marble. Soapstone or limestone will cost from $2,800 to $5,600 and marble will cost $2,800 to $8,400.

4. Laminate

This is an inexpensive material that is easy to install. These are good looking due to the latest printing technology. Heat and stains don’t damage the laminates. If you cut it, then the laminate will be damaged permanently. It costs only $560 to $2,240.

5. Solid surfacing

This kind of countertop is available in a variety of colors and patterns. It can be used for sink, counters, and backsplash which create a seamless look. These materials are resistant to most stains. The cost of solid surfacing is $1,960 to $5,600.

You can shop around to look for various colors and patterns for the countertops. Read some online reviews about each type of countertop before buying one.

5 tips on making a budget for a remodel

In a home improvement project, knowing what you want is easy, but it is tough to figure out how much you can spend on the project. You need to plan ahead and estimate a budget before you start your project.

Estimate the costs

First, find out how much your remodeling project will cost. Normally, major upgrades like a bathroom remodel, or family room addition will cost you $100 to $200 per square foot. You can go to a remodeling contractor and find out how much your remodeling project might cost.


Find out how much you have to spend

You then need to find out whether you have enough money for the project or not. If you are paying cash, then the job is easy. But if you need to borrow, then you should weight the various financing choices. You must assess how much a bank will lend you and how much monthly expense you will incur because of the loan. Most people take a loan from a home equity line of credit.

Get quotes from a few contractors

You first need to specify the details of your remodeling tasks upfront, so that you can tell the remodeler what you expect of them. You should get recommendations for minimum three contractors from your friends and neighbors. You should ask these contractors to give you an itemized bid. You should look at the recent works of the contractors and check out their references.


Cost overruns

You should add 15% to 20% contingency for the unforeseen changes and problems that occur in the projects. Find out if you can still afford to pay for the project.

Set priorities and try to fit the project within your budget

Scale down your project and you can still be satisfied and solvent. You can ask your contractors for providing suggestions on cutting costs. You can think of low-cost alternatives, keep the old items that are still functional, and make the project smaller.
Lastly, you can buy the necessary items yourself from discount stores, and it will save you 20% of your project costs. But when purchasing materials, you have to coordinate with your contractor.