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40 Home Energy Saving Tips

Home energy use

When there is a will there is a way. It is simple to save energy and money at home when you stop, think, and plan.  Here are 40 simple energy saving tips you can implement today.  Most of these are free (yes!) and can make a big difference.

  1. Put outdoor lighting on timers or sensors to reduce energy when not in use.
  2. Add energy efficiency films to your windows, especially if you are in warm climates and have windows over 30 years old.
  3. Tighten hinges on windows and doors.
  4. Buy window dressings/blinds/drapes that decrease energy loss from your house.
  5. Use dimmer switches on your lights to reduce the amount of energy you use.
  6. Apply weather stripping and caulking to windows and doors to decrease air leaks.
  7. Switch to LED, CFL or fluorescent lightbulbs. Now!
  8. Change the air filters in your heat pump or furnace regularly. This allows your furnace to do less work for the same amount of heat.
  9. Install a programmable thermostat to cut down on unnecessary heating/cooling costs.
  10. Check that your fireplace damper is functioning and closed when your fireplace is not in use.
  11. Use a glad fireplace cover and weatherstripping so that heat is not lost through the chimney.
  12. Close heating/air conditioner vents in rooms that you do not use.
  13. Unblock heating/AC vents in rooms you do use, to insure proper air flow.
  14. Replace old appliances as you are able to afford, especially refrigerators which can use 20-30% of your entire energy usage.
  15. Decrease the energy you use to wash your clothes by washing all of your clothes in cold water.
  16. Air dry your clothes whenever possible.
  17. Plant trees around your house, strategically to insulate from cold breezes and to add shade for cooling off in the summer.
  18. Turn off the lights when you leave the room.
  19. Turn off your computer when it’s not in use.
  20. Unplug  your electronic devices and charges when they aren’t in use. Your cell phone charger zaps energy even if your phone is not plugged in.
  21. Air dry dishes instead of using the dishwasher dry cycle.
  22. Wash dishes with cold or warm water.
  23. Lower your hot water heater to 120 degrees.  Test it with a meat thermometer to make sure you get an accurate reading.
  24. Plug home electronics, such as TVs and DVD players, into power strips; turn the power strips off when the equipment is not in use—TVs and DVDs in standby mode still use several watts of power.
  25. Wash only full loads of laundry.
  26. Don’t run the dishwasher unless it is full.
  27. Reduce your daily showers by 3 minutes.
  28. Install low flow faucets and shower heads. (Technology in this area has made great improvements over the past 15 years. “Low flow” no longer means you won’t be able to rinse the conditioner out of your hair)
  29. Insulate your hot water storage tank.
  30. Insulate your hot water pipes when easily accessible.
  31. Keep heat out in the summer by keeping window coverings closed during the day.
  32. Buy Energy Star Appliances when you are in the market for new items.
  33. Set your fridge to 37 to 40 degrees and keep the coils clean to insure efficiency.
  34. Install foam gaskets behind electric outlet and light switch plate covers.
  35. Move your refrigerator away from the stove, dishwasher, or heat vents.
  36. Make sure refrigerator door seals are airtight.
  37. Use pots that fit the size of the burners on your stove. Use lids so you can cook at a lower temperature.
  38. Clean your dryer lint filter before you put in a new load.
  39. Install ceiling fans.
  40. Set your air conditioner 3 degrees higher in the summer and 3 degrees cooler in the winter.