Want to step up your energy-saving savvy? Here are some energy eye-openers along with ways to conserve you might not have thought of yet.
Energy Eye-Opener: Wasting water needlessly uses electricity. In large cities, the biggest draw on electricity is supplying water to residents and cleaning up the water after it has been used.
- Take a good look at your water bill every month. Unusually high use could mean you have an undetected leak.
Energy Eye-Opener: Refrigerators and freezers consume about a sixth of all electricity in a typical American home, using more electricity than any other single household appliance.1
- If possible, move your refrigerator away from the wall, stove, dishwasher and heat vents to help it perform more efficiently.2
Energy Eye-Opener: A six-inch pan on an eight-inch burner will waste more than 40 percent of the stove’s energy3.
- Use pots the same size as your burners. Use lids when possible so you can cook at a lower temperature.
Energy Eye-Opener: Some water heater thermostats come preset to 140 degrees, which can cost you more money.
- Make sure your water heater is set to 120 degrees. This is also recommended to help prevent accidental scalding and burns from water that is too hot – especially important with little ones around.
Energy Eye-Opener: About 90 percent of the electricity used by everyday incandescent bulbs is lost as heat.
- Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). They provide just as much light with one-fourth the energy.5
Energy Eye-Opener: As much as half the energy used in your home goes to heating and cooling.
- Use duct or foil tape to seal the seams and connections of your heating and cooling ducts, especially the ones running through the attic, crawlspace, unheated basement or garage. Wrap them in insulation while you’re at it; you could improve your system’s energy efficiency by as much as 20 percent.6
Energy Eye-Opener: An open fireplace damper can let up to eight percent of heat from your furnace go up the chimney.
- Close the damper in summer and when you don’t have a fire burning in winter.7
Energy Eye-Opener: Devices such as modems and other networking boxes draw power anytime they are plugged in.
- Plug your computer, modem and other electronic devices into a power strip so you can turn them all off when you’re not using them.
- This also goes for small appliances in the kitchen that are constantly drawing energy while plugged in. Make sure all power strips are UL Listed.
Energy Eye-Opener: Laptop computers draw 15 to 25 Watts of electricity during regular use, compared to 150 Watts for a conventional desktop computer and monitor.
- If you’ve got both, use your laptop first. When you upgrade, go with a laptop, and take your old computer to an e-waste recycling station. Many electronics retailers now offer take back programs.