2019 is upon us—and with it, a laundry list of life-improving resolutions. One change that’s easy to put into action? Saving energy around your home. With just a few changes you can reduce your carbon footprint and lower your monthly electric bill. Check out these 8 easy energy-saving tips*:
- Upgrade your thermostat. Programmable thermostats are relatively inexpensive and could save you up to 10 percent a year on heating and cooling! Also, you can rest easy knowing you’re not unnecessarily heating or cooling your house while no one is home.
- Welcome the sunlight. Rather than blast the heater with the blinds drawn, open the shades and let the sun naturally heat your home!
- Look for the ENERGY STAR® label. Home appliances use more energy than many people realize, but ENERGY STAR certified products use 10-15 percent less electricity than standard models. Plus, you can get money back from PSO when you purchase a qualifying ENERGY STAR appliance.
- Make the switch to LEDs. Like your appliances, the wrong light bulbs could cost you. Replacing just five of your home’s most used lights with ENERGY STAR bulbs could save you up to $75 a year—and even more if you switch to LEDs. Another reason to make the switch? PSO offers instant discounts on select LED light bulbs at participating retailers.
- The power of power strips. Video game systems, TVs, computers… Your home is full of small electronics, and they consume energy even when they appear to be turned off. To fix this, simply plug your electronics into a power strip andturn the power strip off when they’re not in use. This small change could save as much as $100 a year!
- Don’t forget your water heater. Water heating accounts for 14-18 percent of your utility bill. Set the heater to no higher than 120 degrees, use low-flow showerheads, and make sure older heaters are insulated with a water heater jacket.
- Tune-up, not tune-out. You get an annual checkup, so shouldn’t your home? Annual maintenance of your heating-and-cooling system by a qualified technician will go a long way to making sure you’re not leaking energy—or cash.
- Get an energy audit. There’s more to your home’s energy consumption than just your heating and cooling systems. Invest in an energy audit tohelp locate and seal leaks across your home. Properly sealing your home can result in big savings—up to 30 percent of energy costs!
There you have it! Follow these simple suggestions and your home (and energy bill!) will be thanking you in no time. Is there an easier or more rewarding resolution? We didn’t think so.
From all of us at PSO, we hope your new year is full of happiness and success—and savings. P.S. You can read the Department of Energy’s full list of energy-saving tips here.