“Energy is a vital part of our modern lives. We use energy in our homes, businesses, and transportation,” explains Molly Hall, executive director of the Energy Education Council. “We hope that people will make changes during Energy Awareness Month that become year-round efficiency habits.”
There are many ways to be more efficient. The Energy Education Council has the following tips to help you increase your energy efficiency:
- Timing is everything when it comes to energy. Electricity demand is at its highest in the afternoon and early evening. You can save money and ease stress on the electric grid by doing activities that require lots of energy in late evening or at night.
- Turn off or unplug electronics you are not using. Use power strips so that you can turn multiple electronics on and off at once.
- When you leave a room, turn off lights, fans, and electronics that are not in use.
- Use efficiency settings on televisions, computers, and other electronics.
- Consider plugging your computer and television into smart power strips. Smart strips sense when a computer is in sleep mode and when a TV is turned off. The smart strip will turn off all related electronics-like cable boxes, video game consoles, and printers.
- Upgrade caulk, weather stripping, and insulation. If your home leaks air, you are losing money and wasting energy. Energy Star estimates that you can save up to 10 percent on your final energy bill by properly sealing and insulating your home. The areas around windows and doors can often use caulking or weather stripping. Improving attic insulation is one of the best and easiest ways to improve your home’s insulation.
- Turn thermostats down in the winter and up in the summer. Dress in layers to stay warm, or use fans to stay cool.
- Save money by adjusting the thermostat (down in the winter and up in the summer) on traditional heating and cooling systems when you are away from home.
- Lower your water heater setting to 120 degrees. Much of the energy a water heater consumes goes to storing the water at the selected temperature.
- If it is time for a new appliance or electronic, consider purchasing an efficient Energy Star product. Energy Star products consume 10 to 50 percent less energy than other products and sometimes qualify for tax credits.
For more information on energy efficiency, visit EnergyEdCouncil.org.