5 Ways to Conserve Energy
We are getting serious (well at least getting better) about trying to conserve energy throughout our new home. I just don’t care to waste any of our hard earned dollars on electricity.
Being in the farmhouse has inspired me to think about those that have lived here in the past and how they might have coped with things. Our house was built in 1890 and didn’t have indoor plumbing until the 30’s. We aren’t sure when the electricity was added But I would imagine from what we found in the house that it was after the plumbing. (There actually used to be a well in our basement which means they would not have had the well pressure tank and pump like we have today, it would have been a manual pump that would have allowed them to have running water without any electricity in the house, very smart!)
So today I hope you will travel back in time with me and get some tips on how old fashioned ideas can help us save in today’s modern world!
In our home, I have a variety of oil lamps and lanterns that we can use to light only the space we are using when we need it. Yes, you still have to purchase oil to run these lamps, however, the idea behind using them is that you will only light them in the space you need to light when you need to light it (since you always want to stay in the same room as a lit lantern). There’s just no need to light up the entire house when everyone is in the same room. Personally, I love the ambiance an oil lantern gives versus the harsher light of a light bulb. 🙂 If you are concerned about a open flame in your home, a Solar Lantern is a great modern alternative. We have several of these Solar Lanterns and LOVE them.
Manual Kitchen Appliances
Remember those old rotary beaters that your grandma kept in her kitchen drawer? They use no electricity and still get the job done! How about a manual ice cream maker? If you aren’t into one of the old paddle style you can check out something like this Ice Cream Ball. There are many things you can pick up like these on a small scale, or if you really want to go all out you could look into manual grain mills and larger kitchen appliances. A good place to look for some of these things are antique shops.
Skip the Washer and Dryer
Do you think you could live without a washer and dryer? I’m not sure that I could but an alternative to use once in a while or in emergencies is a good thing to think about. Something simple and inexpensive like this Breathing Washer would do the trick. I would definitely have a clothes wringer as well. (I manually washed our clothing for about a month last year when we had no washer and dryer, a wringer would have helped immensely!) Then for a dryer, of course, you can easily replace it with a clothesline or an indoor drying rack.
Respect Family Time and Changes in Seasons
As I mentioned above, you will save money if your family is together in the same room in the evening, sharing the electricity in that one room. In days past, the families would spend time together in the largest room in their home in the evening instead of retreating to individual rooms. Not only is this a great way to save on electricity, it’s a great way to increase family togetherness time! Another thing along these lines is to respect seasons. When it’s dark earlier in the winter, head to bed sooner than you would in the summer. Use the summer to work on extra projects while you have the daylight and use the winter to rest. This isn’t always possible, but something to consider.
Save on Heating and Cooling
We’ve always lived without air conditioning so over the years we’ve come up with many ideas on how to stay cool without using extra electricity in the summer. You can read the full list of How to Beat the Summer Heat ideas here. If you use electricity in your heating there are many ways to save as well. Use extra blankets on your bed at night. Make a homemade heating pad and place it at your feet when you get into bed. Wear extra clothing around the house during the day and always ALWAYS wear socks in the winter! (They help regulate body temperature.) Get more tips on how to Save on Heating Bills here.
Find many more Frugal Living Tips here on Little House Living!
I can’t wait to hear your ideas as well! What do you have to add to this list of 5 ways to conserve energy? What are some of your favorite old fashioned ways to save on energy? Have you tried any of the above?