Cool and heat your home efficiently
- Cool your home at 78° F or warmer with the thermostat fan switched to auto. For additional savings, raise your thermostat to 82° F or warmer when you’re away.
- Heat your home at 68° F or cooler with the thermostat fan switched to auto. To save even more, lower your thermostat to 65° F or cooler at bedtime or when you’re away from home.
- Reduce your water heater temperature from 140° F to 120° F, which is the recommended temperature setting according to the U.S. Department of Energy, to save about $7 a month.
- Clean or replace your air conditioner’s filter regularly to help your unit run more efficiently and trim cooling costs.
- Turn off your ceiling fan when you leave the room. A fan that runs all the time costs up to $7 a month.
Control your water use
- Use your dishwasher to conserve energy. Avoid pre-rinsing dishes to save up to $70 a year.
- Limit the time you run your pool pump:
- Summer – six hours a day
- Winter – four hours a day
- Adjust the water level on your washing machine to match the load size, especially when using hot water. Always use a cold rinse.
- Clean the lint filter in your dryer before every load to dry your clothes faster and save money.
- Use the auto sensor function on your dryer to conserve energy by not over-drying your clothes.
How to make your home more energy efficient.
Tree Cover: Plant trees in strategic locations, such as near windows, to help provide natural shade and reduce the use of air conditioning during hot weather.
Insulation: Check current insulation levels, and properly insulate a new or existing home. Insulate ceilings, walls and floors over unconditioned crawl spaces.
Double-Paned Windows: Select these high-performance windows to reduce heat coming into your home. If not, consider installing a reflective or tinted film on the glass.
A/C Unit: Replace the unit with an Energy Star model, especially if it?s more than 10 years old.
Outdoor Lighting: Install photoelectric controls or timers to make sure that outdoor lighting is turned off during the day.
Thermostat: Set your thermostat to 78 degrees, or as high as comfort permits. When the weather is mild, turn off the A/C and open the windows, or use a ceiling fan to increase comfort.
Windows: Close blinds during the hottest part of the day during summertime, but keep them open during the day in winter to take advantage of the sun’s warmth.
Ceiling Fan: In winter, operate fan on low speed, running clockwise. This creates a gentle updraft that forces warm air towards the floor. Turn off when not in use.
Television: Since television sets consume a lot of energy, turn them off when not in use. Look for an Energy Star model when replacing the unit, and use a power strip with an on/off button to save even more.
Lights: Replace incandescent bulbs with energy-efficient, compact fluorescent bulbs.
Video Game: Consider plugging devices into a power strip with an on/off button. And, like the TV, remember to turn off these devices when not in use.
Refrigerator/Freezer: Keep your refrigerator at 37 – 40 degrees and your freezer at 5 degrees. Vacuum the condenser coils every three months. Check the condition of door gaskets.
Oven: Cook as much of the meal in the oven at one time as possible. Remember that every time you open the oven door, the oven temperature drops by 25 to 50 degrees.
Microwave: Using your microwave draws less than half the power of a conventional oven and cooks for a much shorter amount of time.
Stove: Only use pots and pans with flat bottoms on the stove. Develop the habit of “lids-on” cooking to permit lower temperature settings.
Sink: Avoid pre-washing dishes before putting them in the dishwasher.
Dishwasher: An Energy Star model can save you more than $25 a year in energy costs.
Appliances: Turn off all devices that are not in use. If possible, unplug unused appliances to offset carbon use.
Lights: Always turn off lights when leaving a room.
Washer: Wash only full loads of laundry, and wash in cold water. Front-loading machines use 30 percent less water and 50 percent less energy than regular machines.
Dryer: Use the moisture sensor option, which turns the dryer off automatically. Also, a front-loading washing machine can decrease drying time plus improve efficiency.
Clothes Drying Rack: Cut the use of your dryer and save energy by hang-drying your clothes.
A/C Filter: Check and clean or replace air filters every month, or when required by type of filter.
Water Heater: Lower the temperature to 120 degrees. Once a year, drain a bucket of water from the bottom of the tank to get rid of sediment, which “blocks” water from the heating element.
Sink: Repair leaky faucets immediately and, if possible, install a faucet aerator.
Fuse Box: Consider replacing your fuse box with a more energy-efficient breaker panel.
Curtains: Keep closed during the hottest time of the day in the summer. In winter, keep them open to take advantage of the sun’s warmth.
Power Strip: Use as a central “turn off” point to help eliminate the standby power consumption used by office equipment even when it is turned off.
Fish Tank: Replace lights with energy-efficient bulbs and turn off the light whenever possible.
Solar-Powered Phone Charger: Switching to a solar-powered phone charger can cut down on your energy consumption.
Computer Equipment: Turn off other electronic devices such as fax machines and printers when not in use.
Desk Lighting: Consider using lamps so activities can be carried on without illuminating the entire room. Use compact fluorescent bulbs to save energy.
Ceiling Fan: Turning up the thermostat by two degrees and use your ceiling fan to lower AC costs by as much as 4 – 6 percent over the course of the cooling season.
Windows: In warm weather, close blinds during the hottest part of the day. During cold weather, do the opposite.
Lights: Put lamps in corners of rooms where they can reflect light from two wall surfaces instead of one. Replace incandescent bulbs with enerfy-efficient, compact flourescent bulbs.
Non-Plasma TV: Make sure to turn off the TV when not in use. Consider plugging the device into a power strip with an on/off button. If possible, replace with an Energy Star model.
Duvet: Consider bundling up under thicker blankets during the winter months to cut down on your heating costs.
Vanity Lights: Energy-efficient lighting uses less energy and generates less heat than standard bulbs.
Ventilation Fan: Energy-Star-qualified ventilation fans with efficient lighting and fan motors use 65 percent less energy on average than standard models.
Toilet: A leaky toilet can waste 200 gallons of water per day. Repair all toilet and faucet leaks promptly.
Appliances: Unplug all devices when not in use, including hair dryers, clippers, electric toothbrushes and shavers.
Sink: Conserve water by using sink stoppers instead of letting the water run while shaving.
Trees: Plant trees strategically to provide shade to your home, reducing the need for A/C/
Decorative Lights: Replace with solar-powered lights, if possible, or replace the light with a compact fluorescent bulb.
Pool Equipment: Limit the amount of time you run your pump to six hours a day in the summer, and four hours a day in the winter. Also, maintain your pool’s chemical levels, water clarity and cleanliness to save more annually.