Take charge of your home’s energy use and you can save money on your heating bills this winter. You’ll also be making your home more comfortable, and you will be helping to protect the environment too.
How to get started? We’ve listed our top 10 easy, no- or low-cost tips and the impact they will have on your energy savings.
1) Lower the thermostat setting a degree or two (save up to 3 percent per degree on heating costs).
2) Regularly clean or replace the filter in your heating system (save between 5 and 15 percent on annual energy costs).
3) Shut the door and vents in unused rooms (save up to 3 percent on heating costs).
4) Lower the water heater’s temperature to 120 degrees (save up to 10 percent on water heating costs; check the temperature with a thermometer under a hot tap).
5) On windows facing south and west, keep the curtains open on sunny days and close them at night (save 2 – 12 percent on heating costs).
6) Make sure that all windows and doors are properly caulked and weather-stripped (save 1 – 4 percent on heating costs).
7) When your home is unoccupied for more than a few hours, turn down the thermostat (save 10 – 20 percent on annual heating energy costs).
8) Wash and dry full loads of clothes (save 2 – 4 percent on energy costs).
9) Use a microwave oven instead of a regular oven (saves up to 50 percent on cooking costs).
10) Install compact fluorescent lights in high-use fixtures (save about 75 percent on lighting costs per fixture).
Even though we said we had 10 tips, this one is a bonus: check out your electric company’s Web site. They will have many more suggestions and detailed information about any programs they have to help you use energy more wisely.
For more energy saving tips and ideas, download More Than 100 Ways to Improve Your Electric Bill.