how do u save electricity?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    The Added Value of an Energy Efficient Home

    Taking charge of your household’s energy use makes good sense. It’s the first step toward lowering your monthly powers bills. But did you know you’ll be making your home more comfortable and more valuable too? And, by using electricity more efficiently, you’ll be contributing to a more reliable electricity system and doing your part to help protect the environment.

    To help you begin, it’s important to recognize that making your home energy efficient won’t mean you’ll be making it less enjoyable. The smart use of energy, coupled with today’s new, highly efficient products, gives you the power to get more value from your energy bill without doing without.

    Now, it’s still wise to turn something off if it’s not needed. But using energy efficiently really means getting more value from every dollar that you are spending on energy.

    To start, think of your home as a total energy system. That may sound technical, but all you’re really doing is recognizing that one part of the house affects another. For example, buying expensive storm windows without insulating the attic can still waste energy and money. So will purchasing a high-efficiency heating system that runs all day because it doesn’t have a programmable thermostat to tell it when no one is home.

    To really add the value of energy efficiency to your home, follow these three steps:

    1. Tighten the House’s Thermal Envelope

    The thermal envelope includes the roof, walls, windows and doors, insulation, caulking, and weather-stripping. In other words, every item that separates the inside from the outside. Each of these items directly affects the house's heating and cooling loads--as well as its comfort, quiet, and overall value.

    Some tips:

    Properly insulate your house. The U.S. Department of Energy can tell you the most economic and effective level that's right for your Zip code

    Install double pane windows—heat escapes through a single pane of glass almost 14 times faster than through a well-insulated wall.

    Adding a storm door will create the same insulation effect between the doors.

    Caulk and Weather-strip: Poorly caulked and weather-stripped doors and windows can cause as much as 40 percent of a home's heating and cooling dollars to leak out.

    2. Specify High-Efficiency Appliances

    During the past 30 years, home appliances have steadily become more energy efficient. Examples include a microwave oven, which uses 90 percent less energy to cook a meal than a conventional gas oven; compact fluorescent light bulbs, which can offer light similar to incandescent bulbs, but use 75 percent less electricity to do so; and, refrigerators, which can now use less than half as much electricity as those built in the 1970s.

    Some tips:

    Did you know that heating and cooling your home uses more energy and drains more energy dollars than any other system in your home? Typically, 44 percent of your energy bill goes for heating and cooling.

    All the appliances you plug in account for about 20 percent of your household's energy consumption, with refrigerators and clothes dryers at the top of the consumption list.

    Today’s refrigerators consume less than half as much electricity as those built in the 1970’s.

    A microwave oven uses 90 percent less energy to cook a meal than a conventional gas oven.

    About 80–85 percent of the energy used for washing clothes is for heating the water. Use cold water rinses whenever you can.

    Increasing your lighting efficiency is one of the fastest ways to decrease your energy bills. If you replace 25 percent of your lights in high-use areas with compact fluorescents, you can save about 50 percent of your lighting energy bill.

    3. Improve Control Over Household Energy Use

    How the household uses its electric appliances and equipment will finally determine its energy efficiency. There are a houseful of energy-saving tips, many of which are simple, low-, or no-cost, and will help consumers gain greater control over their electric bills.

    Some tips:

    You can save as much as 10 percent a year on your heating and cooling bills by simply turning your thermostat back 10 percent to 15 percent for 8 hours. You can do this automatically without sacrificing comfort by installing an automatic setback or programmable thermostat.

    Change or clean the heating and cooling system's filter every month or two, depending on how dirty it gets. You should be able to see light clearly through the filter. If not, it needs to be changed.

    During the day in the winter, keep curtains drawn and shades pulled over windows facing north. In the summer, close curtains over windows facing south.

    Move furniture away from the air registers, allowing for the free flow of cooled or heated air.

    Place the thermostat on an inside wall, away from windows and doors. Drafts will cause the thermostat to keep the heating or cooling system running, even if the rest of the house is comfortable.

    During hot summer days, close cooling vents in unused rooms. Also, when using window air conditioners, don't forget to close doors to unused rooms.

    Seal any ducts—the network of tubes in the walls, floors, and ceilings, carries the air from your home's furnace and central air conditioner to each room—if they run through the attic or in a crawl space underneath your house.

    You have a free resource to turn to for help in making your home more energy efficient—your electric utility company. Every electric company now offers advice on using energy wisely. Many also offer assistance in the following areas: whole-house energy audits, incentives on efficient appliances, and information on using electricity more efficiently for particular areas of the home.

    For more information, visit your electric company’s Web site today.

    Access information about programs and incentives to encourage wise use.

    EEI companies generously support Low-Income Energy Assistance. Learn more about the wide variety of programs and services electric companies provide, or find out how to submit information about your company's activities.

    Set thermostat at 78 degrees or higher when the house is occupied, and at 85 degrees when vacant (save 1 – 2 percent per degree raised on cooling costs).

    Regularly clean/replace the air conditioner’s air filter (save up to 5 percent on annual energy costs).

    Keep the door and vents closed in unused rooms (save up to 3 percent on cooling costs).

    On hot, sunny days, keep the curtains closed on windows facing south and west (save 2 – 4 percent on cooling costs).

    Caulk and weather-strip around windows and doors (save 1 – 4 percent on cooling costs).

    Wash/dry full loads of clothes and use cold water as much as possible (save 2 – 4 percent on energy costs).

    Set the water heater’s temperature to 120 degrees (save up to 10 percent on water heating costs; check by placing a thermometer under a tap).

    Use a microwave oven instead of a regular oven (save up to 50 percent on cooking costs).

    Install compact fluorescent lights in high-use fixtures (save about 66 percent on lighting cost per fixture).

    Take advantage of the new federal tax credits when making energy efficiency improvements to your home: http://www.energytaxincentives.org/

    Include Home Energy Savings in Summer Vacation Plans

    For consumers going on vacation this summer, the nation's electric utilities advise them to make sure their home's energy use takes a vacation as well. Simple tips can save consumers money while they are away. If they have a vacation home, the electric power industry advises them to be sure to follow these steps when they leave it to return back home.

    Air Conditioning

    Set the thermostat to 85 degrees-if it is a programmable thermostat, use the "hold" or the "vacation" setting to keep it at that temperature.

    Electronics

    Computers, CD/DVD players, TVs, and VCRs-these and other electronic appliances use electricity-even when they are not turned on. Unplug them before leaving.

    Lighting

    Consumers can improve their energy savings, and their home's security, by using timers to turn lights on-and-off each night. And by installing compact fluorescent bulbs in those lamps, consumers will be saving energy too-up to 66 percent less in each lamp-and the bulb will last up to 10 times longer than a regular incandescent bulb.

    Water Heating

    Turn the water heater's temperature down to the lowest setting. Many water heaters have a "vacation" setting for this purpose. Leave a reminder to turn it back up upon returning home.

    Waterbed owners should unplug the heater, or at least lower the temperature 10 degrees.

    Pool owners should shorten the operating time for the pool filter and automatic cleaning sweep (if applicable). A pool cover can save energy-up to 70 percent of pool heat loss is by evaporation according to the U.S. Department of Energy.

    Refrigerator

    Adjust the refrigerator control to a warmer setting. If going on an extended trip, consider emptying the fridge and turning it off (remember to leave the door open to prevent mildew).

  • 1 decade ago

    As one poster has already explained, you can employ a number of energy-efficient replacements for wasteful appliances and parts, and use intelligent techniques to reduce demand otherwise.

    If I were you, though, I'd call Con Ed and have them run an "energy audit" on your place (it's free). They will also supply some things, such as a water heater termal blanket, either for free or near to it.

    Then act on their findings.

    But in the greater scheme of things your question bugs the heck out of me.

    How can we "SAVE" electricity? It's generated, it runs through the power lines, and if it isn't used it is dissapated somewhere. You CAN'T "save" electricity. You can NOT use it - and WASTE it - but also reduce overall demand so that we need to run the generating plants less (and then the utilities SELL them or shut them off, stupid jerks!), or swelter on a hot day without AC so someone ELSE can use the power you don't!

    Use LESS electricity, and use it more efficiently, YES. SAVE electricity?!? Paugh!

  • 1 decade ago

    I like to save electricity in batteries.

  • 7 years ago

    Turning off the Light when Leaving the Room

    Survey Your Home

    The use of insulation to reduce Energy Costs

    Monitor Levels of Heat

    The use of Energy-Saving Devices

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  • 1 decade ago

    I just replaced by light bulbs with fluorescent bulbs, I turn off the lights when I'm not using them. I no longer wash in hot water and take shorter showers. I also keep the fridge stocked with liquids and the fuller it gets the less energy it takes to keep everything cold.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I sit in the dark naked and fan myself.

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