Basic Energy Saving Tips,
Part One Of Our Energy Saving Guide
A big, warm welcome to the basic energy saving tips section of our Energy Saving Guide and your first step on what we hope will be a life-long journey on the road to saving money for you and saving the environment for our kids and their kids and their kids and....
It DOES Come Easy
And here's how easy it can be, so let's get you started on the basics of what you can do to reduce energy costs with these no-cost energy saving tips:
Wait ! There's MORE...
- Turn the lights off when you leave a room.
- 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)(More on this when we talk about the scary concept of "Phantom Loads" !).
- Lower the thermostat on your hot water heater to 120°.
- Set the furnace thermostat to 68 degrees or lower, and the air-conditioner thermostat to 78 degrees or higher, health permitting. 3 percent to 5 percent more energy is used for each degree the furnace is set above 68 degrees and for each degree the air conditioner is set below 78 degrees.
- Wash clothes in cold water, not hot. Many people think that heat makes the clothes cleaner, but that's a myth. Try to wash and dry a full load whenever possible, and do your laundry at night, when rates are lower.
- Air- or line-dry your laundry - make like Mum or Grandma ! Remember, "Your Mother Should Know".
- Run the dishwasher only when full and don't use heat to dry dishes. Instead, air dry the dishes. Avoid using the "rinse hold" setting on your dishwasher which uses up to seven more gallons of hot water per use. Use shorter cycles in the dishwasher. Better yet, wash your dishes by hand !
- In winter or during cooler weather, open the curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home, and close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows. In summer or during warmer weather, close the curtains to keep it cooler.(By the way, this can apply to ALL your windows, but is particularly applicable to south-facing windows, if you're in the Northern Hemisphere (for more on this, visit our Education Centre)).
- Do not preheat your oven. Cook complete meals of several dishes simultaneously in the oven. Use the microwave whenever possible - it uses less power.
- If you have a fireplace, keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is going. Keeping the damper open is like keeping a window wide open during the winter; it allows warm air to go right up the chimney. Try not to use the fireplace and central heating system at the same time.
- Defrost refrigerators and freezers before ice buildup becomes 1/4-inch thick.
- Take showers instead of baths, and shorten your shower time. Baths use 4.5 times more hot water than showers, and cutting your shower in half will reduce water heating costs by 33%.
Well, that about wraps up this, the basic energy saving tips section, or Part One of our Energy Saving Guide.
If you feel there's something we missed (we'd be surprised if there isn't !) and/or if you know of any energy saving tips you think would be useful to share with others, please feel free to fill out the form below for possible addition to this guide. Thanks in advance. Look for your addition to our energy saving tips right here.
Ready for Part Two ? Let's GO !!
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