National Energy Awareness Month
October is National Energy Awareness Month. This month is dedicated to a national effort to emphasize how central energy is important to our national prosperity, security, and environmental well-being. The Obama Administration is also participating this month by sharing and showcasing clean energy events and activities.
DuctTesters has compiled a list of 10 suggested ways you can participate in Energy Awareness Month and save energy at home:
- Programmable Thermostat: if you already have one, in the winter, maintain a temperature of “68°F while you’re awake and setting it lower while you’re asleep or away from home. By turning your thermostat back 10° to 15° for 8 hours, you can save 5% to 15% a year on your heating bill — a savings of as much as 1% for each degree if the setback period is eight hours long.“ (energy.gov) In the summer, “you can follow the same strategy with central air conditioning by keeping your house warmer than normal when you are away, and setting the thermostat to 78°F (26°C) only when you are at home and need cooling.” (energy.gov) If you do not have a programmable thermostat, install one to lower utility bills and efficiently manage your heating and cooling systems.
- Put it in a Power Strip: Plug home electronics, computers, printers, TVs, Bluerays, and DVD players, into power strips. Turn the power strips off when the equipment is not in use.
- Hot Water Heater Temperature: Lower the hot water heater thermostat to 120°F. This will help conserve energy and work just as effectively.
- Upgrade to ENERGY STAR Products: ENERGY STAR labeled light bulbs, home appliances, electronics, and any other possible products. ENERGY STAR products meet higher efficiency guidelines set by the US EPA and the US DoE.
- Wash Laundry in Cold Water: Always wash your laundry in cold water. Laundry detergent works just as well and you will save energy and money by not heating the water.
- Clean Fridge Coils: Dust your refrigerator, especially the coils behind the fridge. Be sure to use the right tools to clean them. By doing so, your refrigerator will run more effectively and not have to use more energy to work properly.
- Outdoor Motion-Detector Lights: replace outdoor lighting with motion-detector censored lighting.
- Change HVAC filters: If you change or clean your HVAC’s air filters at least once a month, your system should run at top energy performance. All HVAC units are different so be sure to read the proper upkeep and maintenance for your specific HVAC unit.
- Upgrade Windows: Check your home’s window sealing, air leakage, and quality. Today’s energy efficient windows are labeled and certified by the National Fenestration Rating Council. The new windows have stickers on them labeling and certifying the window’s performance.
Not sure where to start but want to make some changes to your home? Call us and we can perform an Energy Assessment on your home and compile a budget that fits your actual needs and desires. We do not perform the work but can help you find qualified contractors.