Are You Spending By Leaving Everything Plugged IN?
Did you know that even if a TV is off, it has “standby power” that you are paying for? That’s the same with computers, stereos, iPods, and home office equipment.
Let's assume that in your home there’s a microwave, a computer, a printer, an iPod, a cell phone, a radio and a clock. Lots of homes have more than one TV, toaster ovens, electric coffee machines, electric shavers, electric toothbrushes — all of which remain plugged in, all day and all night. This costs money!
Tip #1: Use a power strip for at least some of the family's various electronics. And when you are done in the kitchen or living room, turn off the power strip.
How Much Are You Spending on Home Appliances — Laundry and Dishwasher?Over one in four of most people's energy dollars are going into the wash.
To be energy efficient, don't run a small load. Wait till you have enough for full one. Why? Because even if you are washing just one little sock, you're paying for the energy to run a whole week's load of laundry.
According to EPA ENERGY STAR, water heating consumes about 90 percent of the energy it takes to operate a clothes washer.
Tip #2: Wait till you have a full load and then wash.
Tip #3: How dirty is it? Don’t always wash with hot water just out of habit. If your clothes are oily, smelly or really dirty, sure you need hot water. But you can save money by washing in “warm” (not hot) or, depending on the item, even in cold water cycle.
Tip #4: Be smart about your clothes dryer In the days before convenience appliances, people just hung the wash out to dry in the bathroom or outside. You might save more than you’d expect over the course of, say, a winter season if you let your clothes air dry for a few hours, and then stuck them in the dryer. That’s especially the case with moisture heavy items such as towels. Air dry, then toss them in the dryer to fluff.
Tip #5: If you are buying a new appliance, get one that's ENERGY STAR-qualified. (If your appliances are more than 10 years old, you might actually save money on energy costs buy purchasing a new one.)
How Much Are You Spending on Heating in Winter and Air Conditioning in Summer?
Nearly half of the average person's entire electricity bill is spent on heating and AC. Brooklyn residents who own their apartment or home should pay attention to the costs of heating and cooling. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's ENERGY STAR® program heating and cooling accounts for nearly half of home energy costs.
Tip #6: Seal air leaks.
Tip #7: Add insulation in your home.The Department of Energy recommends up to 19 inches of insulation for most homes. A tip from Loews: Measure the insulation. "If there's less than 19 inches," the experts at Loews store recommend buying a formaldehyde-free fiber glass insulating product, and you can "achieve a fully insulated attic in just a day or two."
Tip #8: Install energy-efficient windows. Replacing single-pane windows can save you as much up to $500 a year on energy bills, according to EPA ENERGY STAR.
How Much Are You Spending on Lights?If you are like most Americans, then about 12 percent of your total energy bill goes to lights. It's easy, but expensive, to leave the lights on. In 2008, the EPA estimated that the average American home has approximately 30 light fixtures.
Tip #9: When you are out of the house, or out of a room, turn the lights off!
Tip #10:Replace the bulbs. Start with the four or five lights that you use most frequently. Switch in ENERGY STAR bulbs. You might be surprised at how much you can save—as much as $70 a year.
How Much Are You Spending on Heating Water?As much as 14 percent of your energy bill is for heating water. Apartment dwellers might not have control over the heat of the hot water.
Tip #11: But if you do, check the thermostat. If it’s higher than 120 degrees, then set it to 120 or even a bit cooler.
And finally, Tip #12: Be aware of what you're doing in terms of the energy consumption. Once you're "seeing" things through an energy lens, it's easier to make good choices.