No-Cost Energy Saving Tips.
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Warm weather energy savings
When temperatures are on the rise simple changes to everyday routines like washing dishes and doing laundry can help you manage your energy bills while staying cool and comfortable. A few simple, no-cost measures include:
In the Kitchen
- Run only a full dishwasher and use your dishwasher's automatic energy-savings cool-dry cycle. If your dishwasher doesn't have this feature, turn it off after the final rinse and let the dishes air dry. Doing this can reduce dishwasher energy usage by 40 percent.
In the Laundry Room
- Wash your laundry in cold water when possible. In top-load models, about 90 percent of the cost per load is to heat the water.
- Do laundry after 7:00 p.m. to reduce unwanted heat and humidity in your home or dry clothes outside on a line to save energy and avoid the heat a dryer generates.
- View more tips to save energy in warm weather
Cold weather energy savings
When winter comes, colder temperatures and less daylight mean higher energy use. There are many no-cost things you can do to reduce your use, and we’ve outlined some of them below.
- Set your thermostat to 68°--and lower when it makes sense. Your heating system will operate less and use less energy. Turn your thermostat down another 5° at night or when leaving your home for an hour or more to save even more on energy costs.
- Let natural sunlight into your home by opening window coverings on south-facing windows to warm your home. Keep window coverings closed in rooms that receive no direct sunlight to insulate from cold window drafts. At night, close window coverings to retain heat.
- View more no-cost and low-cost home energy savers
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When using hot water, you should:
- Set the temperature on your hot water tank to 120 degrees. Extremely hot water can lead to higher energy costs and even scalding accidents.
- Keep showers short and use a low-flow showerheads. A shower takes less hot water than a bath, but only if it is short in duration.
- Wash only full loads in your washing machine and adjust the water level as needed.
- Use cold water to wash clothes.
- Check the condition of your hot tub cover and check for escaping steam. Insulation blankets help keep the tub toasty for your use.
When cooking at home, you should:
- Stagger pans on upper and lower oven racks to improve air flow because food cooks more quickly and efficiently in ovens when air can circulate freely. Don't lay foils on racks.
- Use glass or ceramic pans in ovens. With those type of pans, you can turn down the temperature about 25 degrees and foods will cook just as quickly.
- Watch the clock or use a timer instead of opening the oven door frequently to check the food. Each time you open the door, the oven temperature drops by 25 degrees.
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When you are at home, you should:
- Turn on your old, inefficient fridge in the garage only for those few occasions when you need extra refreshments. Running all day and night, a 15 year-old refrigerator could cost up to $80 per year.
- Keep your refrigerator closed while deciding what to eat. Each time you open the fridge door, the compressor has to run for eight to 10 minutes to keep the cold inside.
- Make sure you and all your family members turn off the lights when leaving a room.
- For more, go to do-it-yourself tips or contractor-assisted tips.
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