The coldest weather of the year is upon us, and if you are like most Americans, you are looking for ways to keep your energy costs low. Following these ten tips will help you in reducing energy consumption and lower your electric bill:
- Use a programmable thermostat. It will save you money because it can set the temperature to the most cost-effective levels during periods in which no one is home or when you’re asleep.
- Replace the air filter. That will keep your unit in proper working order, which is key to energy-efficient central air and heating systems.
- Lower the temp on your water heater. Lowering the temperature a few degrees will shave some money off your electric bill. The ideal temperature for water heaters is 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Use the right lights. LED bulbs are the most energy-efficient lighting option, using 75 percent less electricity than incandescent bulbs. They have no mercury and last about 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs.
- Turn off the lights. Even LED bulbs use electricity. The simple act of turning off the lights when you leave a room can save power and money.
- Check doors and windows for air leaks. Caulking, weatherstripping or replacing seals on your windows and doors will keep cold air from coming in and warm air from escaping. This will save you dollars and improve the comfort of your home.
- Manage hot water use. Wash only full loads of clothes and dishwashers, and use cold water washes when appropriate. Read more on How to Replace an Electric Water Heater Thermostat
- Dress for the weather. It’s a lot cheaper to put on a sweater or sit under a toasty blanket in the evening than to turn on an electric heater.
- Shut down your computer. Computers are big energy users. Turn your monitor off at night and ditch the screensaver. Opting to shut down overusing a screensaver does not affect your computer’s lifespan.
- Unplug idle electronics. Devices like televisions, microwaves, scanners, and printers use standby power, even when off. Unplug them when not in use.
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