Tips to Save Energy at Home
Every room in your home offers possibilities for electric energy savings. Follow these tips to lower your electricity bill now and in the future.
Easy, No or Low Cost Electric Energy Saving Tips
The following energy saving tips are easy to implement and will cost you little or no money.
- Unplug appliances such as computers and monitors, coffee makers, toasters etc. when not in use. Believe it or not, appliances continue to draw power when they are switched off.
- Unplug devices (cell phones, digital cameras, ipods, handheld video games) from chargers once they are fully charged. Devices that remained connected to charges after they are fully charged continue to draw power and waste electricity.
Turn it Off
- Plug televisions, entertainment center equipment and other appliances into power strips and switch them off when not in use.
- Turn off fans and lighting in unoccupied rooms.
Turn it On
- Install timer switches on indoor lights instead of leaving lights on all day or all night.
- When it is time to replace your incandescent light bulb, switch to energy-saving LED and CFL bulbs. LED and CFL bulbs use 70-90% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs and last 10-25 times longer.
- For outdoor lighting, install motion detectors (so that lights are only turned on when needed) or solar-powered outdoor lights.
- Set the air conditioner thermostat to 78 degrees or higher.
- Set your computer to energy saving powersave/sleep mode.
Cool it Down
- Grill meals outside during the summer to keep your home cool.
- Cook small portions of food in microwave ovens or toaster ovens (instead of using your conventional oven which raises the temperature inside your home).
- Operate your oven, dishwasher, washing machine and dryer during the cooler part of the day since running these appliances will raise the temperature inside your home.
- Dry your clothes on a clothesline whenever possible.
- Use the cool-down cycle in your dryer so that clothes will continue to dry using the residual heat in the dryer.
- Use ceiling and floor fans to help circulate air and make the room you are in feel cooler.
- Close blinds and curtains on west- and south-facing windows during the day.
Fill it Up
- By running the dishwasher, washing machine and dryer with full loads (instead of several small loads) you’ll use less electricity and less hot water. Water heaters are the second highest source of energy usage in the home.
- Keep your refrigerator more than half full. The contents of your refrigerator will actually help maintain the cool interior temperature which means your refrigerator doesn’t have to work as hard.
Clean it Up
- Clean the lint filter in the dryer after each load of laundry to improve air circulation.
- Clean or replace central air conditioner filters monthly for peak efficiency.
- Clean the air conditioner’s outdoor condenser coil yearly so that your a/c will run more efficiently.
- Vacuum the condenser coils of refrigerators (above, below or behind the unit) every three months so that your refrigerator will operate more efficiently. This is especially important if you have indoor pets like cats and dogs. This tip will also help extend the life of your refrigerator!
Invest and Save Electric Energy Saving Tips
The following energy saving tips are not cost-free but are well worth the investment.
- Purchase products with the ENERGY STAR® label. They consume t less energy than other appliances and have undergone third-party testing. The older the appliance you replace, the more you save. For example, if your air conditioner is more than 12 years old, replacing it with and replacing an ENERGY STAR® certified model could save you 30% your utility bill.
- Have a qualified professional perform an energy audit on your home so that you can identify different ways to save electricity.
- Insulate your home to save on air conditioning energy consumption.
- Install a programmable thermostat to control air conditioning and heating systems. Programmable thermostats make it easy to save energy when you are away from home or sleeping.
- Purchase a ceiling fan to circulate cool air in the summer, warm air in the winter.
- Consider buying a laptop computer which uses less electricity than a desktop computer.