Ways To Make Your Home More Energy Efficient
- Tighten and weather-strip old windows and then add storm windows.
- Seal around pipe penetration coming through walls.
- When your fireplace is not operating, its flue should be closed tightly, with a sign hanging from the flue handle warning it is closed.
- Drop-down, disappearing stairways should fit tightly into the ceiling and be carefully weather stripped.
- Whole-house attic fans should be sealed tightly during the winter.
- Make sure your water heater is set at the lowest point. Try setting it to 120º.
- Try washing clothes with warm water and rinsing with cold water.
- Overfilling your washer can increase your energy use.
- If your water heater is located in an unconditioned space, install a thermal wrap around it. Take care to install it in accordance with the tank and wrap manufacturers' instructions.
- Don't over-dry your clothes. If 50 minutes works, don't set it to 70 minutes.
- Make sure to clean the inside lint filter before each drying cycle.
- Periodically check your flexible metal dryer vent hose to ensure it is still tightly connected and not kinked.
- Make sure refrigerator and freezer seals fit tightly when doors close.
- Keep outside coils clean. Dirty coils make your refrigerator compressor work longer to remove heat.
- Setting your freezer below 0º uses extra energy.
- Setting your refrigerator below 37º uses extra energy.
Heating & Air Conditioning
- Try to keep your thermostat at 68º in the winter and 75º in the summer.
- Heating & cooling systems should be checked to verify they are moving the correct amount of air. An HVAC technician can tell you if it is.
- Heat pump and air conditioning systems should be checked annually to verify they are properly charged, strictly in accordance with manufacturers' guidelines.
- Inside and outside coils should be kept clean and free of debris.
- Gas furnaces should be tuned for maximum combustion efficiency.
- Return filters should be changed monthly.
- Have an HVAC technician check carefully for duct leaks. Leaks that are found should be sealed with fiberglass mesh and mastic sealant.
- Don't leave on unnecessary lights
- Replace incandescent bulbs with energy-saving compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). They use a fraction of the wattage, last much longer and give off less heat.
- When you finish cooking, turn off the kitchen lighting and the range exhaust fan.
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