161 Energy Saving Tips

Home Improvement

 

Attic

 

 1. Re-insulate up to 12 inches

 2. Get a radiant barrier when you replace your roof

 3. Get a solar attic fan (verify there is enough sunlight to be

worth it)

 4. Do not caulk around your natural gas water heater

exhaust pipes or furnace exhaust pipes

 5. Prevent heat loss as warm air travels through heat ducts

from your furnace by wrapping heat ducts with insulation.

attic Also, use duct foil tape where rectangular heat ducts join,

and waterbase acrylic latex caulk where round and

rectangular duct fittings meet

 6. Seal cracks where pipes, electrical wires, vents and ducts

enter your home

 7. Buy a thermal thermometer and get a reading of the hot

spots in your attic. Make sure those areas are insulated

 8. Have an expert spray green insulation onto your attic

ceiling. It is a great product, but you don't want to harm

your roof's sheathing

 9. If any insulation appears to be touching the electrical

conduits, clear it away. That and metal studs draw the

heat and ruin the effects of insulation.

10. If you're building a new home, consider putting the hvac

somewhere room temperature rather than the attic.

Overheating expends extra energy.

11. Replace any wet or compacted insulation immediately.

Make sure the leak is fixed.

12. Seal any unused floor hatches.

13. Seal the attic door.

14. Two layers of foam insulation with different seams is

better than one thick layer

15. Consider structural insulated panels, which can go as high

as R48

16. It's usually not a great idea to install insulation between

the rafters

17. Closed cell foam insulation is less risky than open cell

18. Your whole wall insulation rating will always be less than

the number on the insulation

19.  sloped roofs usually include a soffit-to-ridge

ventilation channel

20. If your attic is sealed but has ventilation, you probably

don't need forced air registers

 

Bathroom

 

21. Install a low-flow aerator or flow restrictor on an existing

shower head, and you’ll use less water when it seems like

more! Both are inexpensive and easy to install—just

screw them in

22. Make sure the toilet handle doesn’t stick after flushing. It

wastes water and makes your water pump run longer

23. Open the back of your toilet and check the seal. Make

sure the chain isn't allowing water to get too high in the

tank

24. Take a shower instead of a bath. You’ll use less hot water

25. Turn off hot water when you don’t need it. Don’t let it

run when you wash or shave

26. If it seems like your toilet is running too long, fix it asap.

bathroom Re-seal the stopper that shuts off the flow of water to the

bowl

27. Buy a toilet tank to minimize water waste in the back of

the toilet

28. Put a book of matches in the medicine cabinet. Light one

as you leave the bathroom and turn off the exhaust fan.

Bedroom

 

29. Reverse ceiling fans when the heater is on to run

clockwise and circulate warm air

30. De-seasonalize your curtains. Light, summer colors let in

more sun and heat a room. Dark colors keep it cooler

31. In the summer, use plants to block the sunlight during

midday

32. In the summer, close the blinds of rooms not in use

33. In the winter open the blinds of rooms not in use

34. If you have blinds, leave them at about a 30 degree tilt

towards the sun, so it reflects into the room and creates

more natural light

35. Turn off the humidifier or dehumidifier when they’re not

needed

36. Use ceiling fans in rooms without them. Make sure they're

running when the AC or heat are on

37. Make sure ceiling fans run counterclockwise in the

summer when the AC is on to dispurse heat

38. Make sure vents, drapes, and other impements aren't

blocking your vents or the air circulation in the room

39. Keep inside doors open so air can circulate. Try not to

block any doorways or good air flow areas with furniture

 

Exterior

 

40. Get a leaky roof replaced

41. Get a mini solar pv system for your yard, shed, garage,

etc

42. Use solar to replace outdoor lights

43. Replace all of your halogen lights with CFL

44. If you don't have motion sensors, you can buy some and

use them to reduce your outdoor lighting usage

45. If you have motion sensors, make sure they aren't going

off by accident at night.

46. Replace your glass patio door with an insulated, sealed

double door

47. Use solar screens in the summer

48. About 2 percent of air escapes your home through

electrical outlets, especially on outside walls. Install

insulation made for electrical outlets. You can also use

safety outlet plugs to stop cold air from entering your

home

49. For outdoor use, consider high-pressure sodium bulbs,

which are more efficient and last longer than their

incandescent counterparts

50. Seal all of your exterior doors- garage, attic, front and

back

 

Flooring

 

51. Add a large rug to every room with bare floors

 

Garage/Utility

 

52.  Check and make sure your hot water heater isn't running

too long after you've showered. It's a sign that it's not

working as efficiently as possible

53.  Do more than one load at a time. Your dryer will already

be warm and will need less heat to dry your clothes

54.  Do you have an older refrigerator in your garage? It's

probably putting out more energy than your kitchen

refrigerator. Is it worth it?

55.  Don't overdry your clothes. It does nothing for them and

just wastes energy.

56.  Don't overload either the washer or dryer. While it uses

less energy to do large loads less often, it causes the

machines to work harder and break sooner.

57.  If you have a small load, remember to lower the water

level

58.  Keep the lint trap clean

59.  Keep your hot water hot by making sure pipes in

unheated areas are insulated

60.  On sunny days, hang your clothes outdoors to dry unless

you live next to a smelting plant.

61.  Once a year, drain the water heater tank completely.

Then turn the incoming water on and off, alternately, for

about 20 seconds. Some newer models are self-cleaning.

Check the manufacturer’s manual

62. Put an insulating blanket around your water heater. It

holds heat in

63.  Save even more by setting your water heater to “on

vacation” (if your unit has this feature) when you’re away

from home more than two days

64.  Set your water heater temperature at 120 degrees. A

family of four, each showering for five minutes, uses

about 700 gallons of water a week. By lowering the

thermostat, you can cut water heating bills without

sacrificing comfort

65. Use less detergent. Most people put in more than the

recommended amount, which causes the washer to have

to work harder to rinse your clothes

66. Wash only full loads and use the shortest cycle to get

your dishes clean

67. Wash your clothes in cold water. If either it or the dryer

has a low energy setting, use that.

68. A great luxury to have, and an appliance that makes quite

a difference in your energy usage is a tankless water

heater.

 

General

 

69. Set your appliances to "power save" or "quiet mode"

70. Pay for a full inspection

71. Centralize and track your home energy usage by moving

towards a smart home strategy

72. Always use cold water when it will do the job as well as

hot

73. Insulation if your friend. The higher the R value, the

better it is.

74. Operate your stove, oven, dishwasher and clothes dryer

in the morning or evening when it’s cooler outside. They

add extra heat to your home and make your air

conditioner work harder

75. Buy a Kill a Watt handheld wattage tester. It will tell you

how much energy your appliances are using, which makes

it easier to plan energy savings

76. Remember that energy savings doesn't just mean electric.

Water is fast becoming a scarce resource, and maximizing

your water efficiency is a good idea

 

HVAC

 

77. Programmable Thermostat for HVAC

78. Make sure windows are shut when running the heat or AC

79. Close the air vents in unused rooms

80. Move your thermostat up or down by two extra degrees

to cut down on HVAC use

81. Move your thermostat an additional three degrees when

you aren't home to cut down on HVAC use.

82. Clean your filters once a month

83. Check your HVAC system's ducts for leaks

84. Clean the outside Condenser several times a year

85. Check your outside AC Condenser for leaks

86. Make sure your thermostat and HVAC are still working

together promptly

87. Lower the amount of cycles your AC and heat go through

manually to reduce usage.

88. Clear out the plants around your AC Compressor

89. Get an HVAC inspection. Check your area for rebates on

air duct inspections and cleaning

90. Limit your use of space heaters or window air conditioner

units

91. Turn down the heat. You’ll typically save 1 percent to 3

percent on your heating costs for every degree you dial

down

92. Be sure the thermostats on appliances work properly. If

the thermostat sticks, the appliance stays on and raises

your energy bill

93. Buy an air conditioner with a high energy efficiency rating

(EER). It’s printed on the EnergyGuide label attached to

the unit. A unit with an EER of 10 will cost half as much to

operate as one with an EER of 5

94. Go small on a new HVAC- your heat and air are meant to

withstand extreme temperatures. If making a big

purchase like an HVAC, it's best to go small and use

energy efficient measures to ensure it's enough

95. Have your heating system tuned and inspected by a

service professional before each heating season. Heat

losses from a poorly maintained system add up over time,

sometimes at a rate of 1 percent to 2 percent a year

96. If you don't use a room often, close the heating and air

vent. If it's not near a thermostat, close the door.

97. Install an automatic setback or programmable thermostat

that starts your air conditioner shortly before you get

home

98. Install your air conditioner in the shade. When it’s in

direct sunlight, it uses more energy

99. Put your thermostat on an interior wall and make sure it's

not too close to an attic, garage, or windows. If the air

around your thermostat is warmer than the rest of the

house, you'll run the AC more often and for longer time.

 

Kitchen

 

100. Turn off your kitchen fan after cooking

101. A dishwasher will operate more efficiently if you unclog

102. of food particles and clean it regularly

103. Avoid using your dishwasher to warm plates. The extra

heat will raise your energy bill

104. Set your dishwasher at 120 degrees or “low.” Check your

manufacturer’s manual to see if you can use 120 degree

water

105. Use glass and ceramic dishes. They hold heat better and

you can lower the oven temperature 25 degrees

106. Avoid opening the refrigerator or freezer door to

browse. Each time you do, cold air escapes and your

energy costs increase

107. Because frozen food stays cold longer than air, it’s good

to keep your freezer full, but not packed.

108. Clean the reflector pans on your range. They’ll reflect

more heat when they shine

109. Close your refrigerator door with a dollar stuck halfway in

and out. Can you pull it out easily? If so, you may want to

replace the seal on your refrigerator, or at least scrub

debris off to help it stick better.

110. Cutting food into smaller portions saves cooking time

111. Don't leave appliances on if you're out of the room more

than five minutes.

112. Don't overpack your refrigerator. It's good to have a full

refrigerator, but not packed.

113. Get a couple of gallons of water for the back of your

refrigerator. It keeps the area cool and helps reduce

motor use.

114. If the flames on your gas stove or oven are yellow, energy

is being wasted and the burners need adjusting. Call an

appliance repair professional

115. If you have a manual-defrost freezer, it will work more

efficiently when ice buildup is kept to 1/4 inch or less

116. If you have a self-cleaning oven, clean it immediately

after use. Because it’s already hot, it will take less energy

to get to the heatcleaning stage

117. Instead of leaving your coffee maker with a pot brewing,

put your coffee into a well-insulated thermos.

kitchen Leave room in front of your refrigerator/freezer to allow

cold air to circulate better

118. Let hot foods cool before putting them in your

refrigerator or freezer. Hot foods make the refrigerator

think it needs to run.

119. Make sure the condensor coils on the back of your fridge

are clean and at least two inches away from the wall. If

they are against the wall, your refrigerator will keep

running.

120. Open the oven door to peek at food inside, and you’ll

lose 25 degrees to 75 degrees of heat. It’s best to look

through the window or wait until the food is almost done

before opening the door

121. Preheat the oven only when the recipe calls for it. Don’t

preheat if you’re using the broiler

122. Put a gallon of distilled water in the back of your freezer,

and like the refrigerator, it works best full but not

packed.

123. Put lids on pots and pans and make sure they’re the right

size for the burners. Foods will cook faster and use less

energy

124. Put more than one item in the oven at once

kitchen Set the refrigerator thermometer at 38 degrees to 42

degrees and your freezer at 0 degrees to 5 degrees

125. Turn off the dishwasher after the wash and rinse cycles.

When dishes air dry, you’ll save on heating costs. On

newer models, use the heat-off setting or the energysaver

dry option

126. When your electric burners are worn out and don’t work

properly, they use more energy. Save by replacing them

127. Your refrigerator/freezer uses more electricity than any

other appliance in your kitchen.

128. Your stove or oven may not always be the best choice!

Small appliances, such as crockpots and electric frying

pans, and your microwave oven may be more energy

efficient

129. Use the oven instead of a propane grill 10 times per year

130. Use the burners instead of a propane grill 10 times per

year

131. Don't put aluminum foil at the bottom of a grill to catch

drippings.

 

 

Lighting

 

132. Replace burned out bulbs with more expensive LED or

CFL bulbs. They have 25000 lives, so they cost less while

using 15-20% of the energy

133. Verify how many watts your lightbulb needs. Err to

having dimmer lights rather than too many.

lighting When buying light fixtures, look for the Energy Star

rating to save the amount of watts needed

134. Replace multi-light fixtures (Chandelier and multiple-light

ceiling fans) with single light fixtures or multiple, dimmer

lights

135. Move your lights onto a fixed schedule to avoid leaving

any on too long.

136. Dimmer Switches to keep wattage low

137. The Lighting Facts label on light bulb packages highlights

brightness and yearly energy cost

138. When buying bulbs, check the lumens. The higher the

lumens, the more light you’ll get.

 

Living Room

 

139.  Move free standing light fixtures away from well lit areas.

living room Create free "solar lamps". Use white/light, lampshades.

Put lamps in well lit corners to get reflection from two

walls.

140. About 14 percent of air escapes your home through the

fireplace chimney

141.  Buy insulated drapes. They provide better heat

dispursement in the winter and insulation from heat if

pulled over windows in the summer

living room Don't worry about unplugging your power strips because

of the "vampire" power your TV uses. Similarly, it's a

myth that leaving your phone in the charger all night uses

a lot of vampire energy. In both cases, the difference is

pennies.

142. Dust- if you're furniture and appliances are dusty, it cuts

down on the natural light.

143. For small, detachable appliances like hand held vacuums,

use them plugged in whenver possible. It takes less

energy than recharging

144. Light colored walls reflect light, which means they need

fewer watts to illuminate

145. On cloudy days, keep the blinds closed to have the

strongest barrier against the outside

146. Put furniture near windows so sunlight will bounce off

and dispurse more natural light

147. Replace broken glass on windows as soon as possible.

148. Seal unused fireplaces to keep heat from escaping and

cold air from coming in

149. Take advantage of free light from the sun by putting

furniture near windows

150. Turn the central heat off if you're using the fireplace and

only using one room.

151. While you want the south facing drapes open during

sunny days to help warm the house, the north facing

drapes should be insulated and closed to keep out the

cold

 

Other

 

152. Use a generator for two hours a night.

 

Pool

 

153. If you have a pool or spa, put a solar cover over them

whenever possible. It insulates the water temperature

and helps prevent some evaporation.

154. Keep the pool filters clean. You’ll save energy

security Place security lights on a timer or photoelectric control so

they’ll turn on and off automatically. Mercury vapor or

high pressure sodium lights are the best energy buys for

outdoors

 

Windows and Doors

 

155. If it is a cool morning to be followed by a warm

afternoon, open your windows until it warms up above

room temperature.

156. If you're handy, start replacing your leaky windows with

high performance windows now. No need to wait and

replace them all at once

157. Put low cost, transparent, window coverings on windows

to insulate them.

158. Recaulk all of your windows

159. Stop giggling at the word caulk

160. Block window and door frames with weather strips or

draft guards

 

Yard

 

161. If you're putting in a sprinkler system, consider using

natural irrigation to help cut down on water bills

162. If placed well, rain barrells are a good fit for every yard