Energy and Money Saving Tips

Here is a list of energy and money saving tips you can use right at home!

Hot water temperature

    • Turn down the temperature of your hot water. Make sure the temperature of your hot water is not over 120 degrees.

Heating the house for who?

    • Turn down your thermostat. Lower the thermostats to 55 F, particularly when you are not at home, leave for work, or go away for the weekend or longer.

More showers, less baths

    • Take showers instead of baths! A typical bath will use 50 gallons of water, compared to 13 gallons for a 5 minute shower with an energy efficient showerhead. Challenge the kids to see who can take the shortest shower. Make saving energy fun!

Cool off your refrigerator

    • Turn down the refrigerator! The refrigerator uses 20% of the average home’s electricity. The temperature in your refrigerator should be 38 to 40 degrees and the freezer 0 to 5 degrees. Make sure they are not running too cold. Make sure the strip around the door is in good repair. Defrost the freezer as needed.

More frozen food?!?

    • Keep the freezer full! A full freezer wastes less energy, so keep the freezer full of something such as loaves of bread or milk jugs filled with water. This will keep the cold air from “falling out” when the door is opened.

Make fast decisions

    • Plan what you need/want from the freezer or refrigerator to keep the doors open as short a time as possible so the cold air isn’t replace with warm air from the room.

Lint filter maintenance

    • Clean the lint filter in the clothes dryer. A clean filter not only saves energy, it reduces the chance of fire.

Use the ‘Cold Wash” cycle for clothes

    • Rinse and wash clothes using the washing machine’s cold water cycle.

Limit your dryer usage

    • Use the clothes dryer only when you have to. Shorten the time you use the dryer by hanging bulky items such as towels, blankets and jeans outside when possible. Add a dry towel to your dryer load – it will absorb moisture and reduce drying time.

More popcorn!

    • Microwaves and pressure cookers save money! Use a pressure cooker or a microwave to save energy when possible. A pressure cooker cuts cooking time by two-thirds; a microwave uses less than half the energy of a regular oven.

Limit your lights

    • Use only the light you need! Light only the area of the room you need rather than the whole room. Lighting accounts for 10 to 15 percent of annual household electricity use. Turn lights off when leaving the room. Cut back on display or decorative lighting. Use compact fluorescent bulbs!

Check your windows and doors

    • Give your home an energy check-up! Look for drafty windows and doors, dripping faucets, and poorly insulated areas.

Rainy day energy savings account

    • Establish an Energy Savings Account. Deposit as much as you can each week into a savings account. Even if it is only $5, it will be there to help.

Unplug, unplug, unplug

    • Turn your electornics off and unplug them!

Slowly add heat

    • Be heat smart! If you want heat, raise the setting on the thermostat slowly – and stop when you hear the furnace start. Give the space a chance to warm up before increasing the temperature.

A clean heater is a happy heater

    • Clear and clean baseboard heating elements and radiators! Make sure chairs, couches, bookshelves, drapes, etc. are not blocking the baseboard elements and radiators making it difficult for heat to get to the rest of the room. Dusting or vacuuming also helps the radiators and baseboards move the heat more easily.

Furnace filter maintenance

    • Vacuum your furnace filter every month! Replace it when it cannot be vacuumed clean. Dirty filters restrict heat flow.

Use those shades

    • Close curtains and shades. Cover your windows with drapes, quilts, shades or blankets especially at night when it is colder outside and you have turned the heat down! On sunny winter days, do the opposite and open window coverings to let the sun shine in and warm you up!

Close off rooms

    • Close heat vents to unused rooms and turn the thermostat down to 55 degrees. Close off unused rooms in the winter or summer so they are not heated or cooled unnecessarily. Keeping bedroom doors closed will keep the heat in other areas of the home and provide a cooler area to sleep in.

Keep closets shut

    • Close closet doors! Heating or cooling the closet is not necessary, so keep the closet doors closed. It’s better to keep the heat in the room where you need it!

No fire, no air

    • Close the flu or damper! Once your fireplace or woodstove is totally out – no glowing coals in the fireplace and the stove is cold to the touch – shut the flu or damper to prevent warm air from going up the chimney.

Insulate pipes

    • Insulate water pipes, water heaters, and duct work. Buy low-flow shower heads and faucet aerators to reduce the work of your water pump!

Local heating programs

    • If you are a LIHEAP client ask your local community action agency about weatherization programs that might be available to you.

Weatherize your house

    • Weatherization can reduce heating energy consumption by 15 to 20%! Check into the availability of low cost services, low cost loan programs for energy efficiency or start setting aside a weekly amount even if it is only $5 or $10 to execute a project next year! The pay back for insulating your attic and installing weather stripping and caulk around windows and doors is terrific! You increase your heating efficiency and improve your comfort level by reducing drafts!

Close the door!

  • Shut the door! Believe it or not, the average open door makes a 21 square foot HOLE in the wall! You will save fuel if you are quick about entering and leaving your residence. When you are leaving make sure you have everything you need (keys, cell phone, carry bags, gloves, etc.) so you only have to open and close the door once!

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