Easy, Low-Cost and No-Cost Ways To Reduce Kauai Energy Costs

Kauai residents may significantly lower their electric bills and overall energy costs by evaluating home energy use and making some small changes that add up to big savings now.

Save energy. Save money.

The best plan for saving money is to first complete full energy use review. A home energy audit will help you pinpoint areas where energy is being wasted and help you develop effective measures to reduce your energy costs.

Whether you want to install solar power or other alternative energy options will depend upon a cost analysis as well as a consideration of how long you plant to live in your current home.

Meanwhile you can develop a strategy to make low-cost and no-cost changes and relatively minor home improvements that will optimize your energy efficiency as well as save you money.

Here are the top things you can do to lower your Kauai energy bill:

If you use air conditioning or heating check your insulation levels and inspect for holes or cracks around walls, ceilings, windows and doors as well as light and plumbing fixtures where leaks may occur. Also check for open fireplace dampers. Install a programmable thermostat.

Evaluate your family’s overall lighting use paying particular attention to high-use areas including the kitchen, living room and outdoor lighting. Investigate ways to use lighting controls including timers, dimmers and occupancy sensors.

Whenever possible utilize the natural sunlight, and use reflective colors on walls to optimize natural light. Utilize motion detectors and photocells for exterior lighting.

Make an extra effort to turn off any lights, fans, televisions and computers that are not being used. Use compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs)with the Energy Star label.

Unplug cell phone chargers and laptop chargers when they are not being used because they are using electricity even when they are not charging anything!

Plug all home electronics including televisions and DVD players into power strips that you can turn off when the equipment isn’t being used (TVs and DVDs use power when in standby mode).

Make sure your appliances as well as your cooling/heating systems are properly maintained as they will operate much more efficiently. Refer to your owner’s manuals for the recommended maintenance procedures. Consider replacing inefficient appliances with Energy Star models which meet strict efficiency guidelines.

If you use a dishwasher make sure to wash only full loads, and air dry the dishes rather than using the drying cycle. Wash only full loads of clothes and hang out your clothes to dry.

Take short showers rather than baths, and lower the thermostat on your hot water heater so that is just warm enough to be comfortable for you.

Drive your automobile sensibly. Accelerating rapidly and speeding wastes gasoline.

Kauai Residents Benefit From KIUC Energy Efficiency Programs

Take advantage of the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) energy-efficiency programs with the goal improving the efficiency of your electrical use and developing a range of strategies to lower your overall energy costs.

KIUC offers programs to help you replace inefficient appliances (e.g., refrigerators, freezers, washing machines), solar water heater rebates ($800), solar loans (no interest, 5-year loans, no downpayment) and an appliance meter service to identify inefficient appliances.

KIUC also has a member lighting program (3 free 20-watt compact fluorescent light bulbs), commercial retrofit programs, and even free home visits by a Residential Energy Specialist to help you lower the overall amount of money you pay for energy. Reducing energy use also helps create a cleaner Hawaii environment.

You can pick up applications for KIUC’s Efficient Appliance Replacement Rebate program at Home Depot, Sears, Kapaa Electric & Appliance or KIUC.

Last but not least is KIUC’s Qualifying Member Appliance Replacement Program in partnership with Kauai County to help low-income seniors (age 60 and above) reduce their electricity bill by replacing old water heaters and refrigerators at no cost to the member.

For more information about these Energy-Efficiency Programs give KIUC a call at 808-246-8280 or visit www.kiuc.coop.

Kauai Vacation Rentals, Realty Services and Concierge

For the finest quality Kauai vacation rentals including luxury estates, condos, cottages and beach villas, see our Kauai Vacation Rental Galleries or use our new Map-Based Vacation Rental Search feature.

If you are considering buying a home on Kauai you can see some of the island’s best real estate deals by browsing through the Coldwell Banker Bali Hai Realty Kauai Real Estate Galleries, or use the Map-Based Kauai Home Search.

Also please feel free to give us a call. The Bali Hai Realty staff will be happy to help you find the perfect Kauai vacation rental or assist you in the process of buying or selling a Kauai home. We also offer the highest level of personalized Concierge Services to help you plan your Kauai vacation activities.

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