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Tips For Saving Electricity and Money

HEATING & COOLING

  • Set your thermostat back. For each 4 degrees you lower your thermostat each night, you will save up to 10% in energy costs.
  • Install & use a programmable thermostat that will turn down the heat when you are not at home or are asleep.
  • If you’re chilly, don’t turn up the heat, put on a sweater.
  • Avoid the use of portable electric heaters, they are big energy users.
  • Keep blinds, shades and drapes closed during the hottest part of the day in the summer.
  • Use area rugs on cold floors.
  • Install ceiling fans and use them to supplement or even as a alternative to air conditioning.
  • Make sure your ceiling fan is blowing air downwards in summer.
  • Plant leafy (deciduous) trees on the sunny side of your house.
  • Plant pine or fir trees on the north side to provide an energy-saving windbreak.
  • Clean or replace the furnace filter every three months during the winter. A clogged filter reduces the flow of air & will make your furnace run longer.

WATER

  • Fix leaky faucets – that little drip can add up to 95 litres of water per faucet per month.
  • Install a low flow shower head. This can save you up to 15% of your home’s hot water use. A 5-min shower uses about half as much water as a bath.
  • Drain a pail of water from your natural gas hot water tank every 3 months to remove sediment that prevents heat transfer, lowering the units efficiency.

REFRIGERATOR

  • The refrigerator is one of the biggest electricity guzzlers in most homes. Look for ENERY STAR qualified refrigerators.
  • Don’t keep that old, inefficient refrigerator running in the basement for occasional refreshments. It could cost you $150 or more per year in electricity.
  • Check your refrigerator’s door seal by closing the door on a $5 bill. If it’s held tightly in place, the seal is OK.
  • Clean your refrigerator’s coils and air intake grill every 3 months.
  • Keep refrigerators and freezers out of direct sunlight.
  • Allow hot foods to cool before putting them in the refrigerator.
  • Go into your fridge & freezer knowing what you need & close the doors quickly.

Newer refrigerators, freezers and window air conditioners cost much less to operate than older units. For example, replacing a 20-year-old 18 cubic feet refrigerator with a new Energy Star™ refrigerator will result in an annual energy cost savings of about $130. At this rate, the savings will pay for the cost of the new refrigerator in five to seven years.

If you're planning to buy a new refrigerator or freezer please consider these Energy Efficiency Tips:

Choose the right size!

The larger the appliance the more electricity it will use so consider the number of people that will be using the appliance.

  • One or two people - 340L or 12 cubic feet
  • Three or four people - 395 to 480L or 14 to 17 cubic feet
  • Each additional person - add 55L or 2 cubic feet

Configuration Counts

Top freezer models are the most efficient, followed by bottom freezers, with side-by-side models being the least efficient.

Look for the ENERGY STAR®

ENERGY STAR® symbol is a simple way for you to identify products that are among the most energy-efficient on the market. Only manufacturers and retailers whose products meet the ENERGY STAR® criteria can label their products with this symbol. Find out more about qualified ENERGY STAR® products at ENERGY STAR

Look for a low EnerGuide rating

The EnerGuide label is a tool to help you make an energy-wise choice when buying a new appliance. It shows how much energy appliances consume in a year of normal service and makes it easy to compare the energy efficiency of each model to others of the same size and class.

When shopping for a new appliance look for a low EnerGuide rating. Find out about EnerGuide at: EnerGuide

Refrigeration Tips Once you have selected a new fridge or freezer, here are some additional energy efficiency tips you can follow:

  • Don't overfill the refrigerator - this blocks air circulation.
  • A full freezer will perform better than an empty one.
  • Clean your refrigerator's coils (in the back) and air intake grill (below the doors) every 3 months.
  • Allow hot foods to cool before putting them in the refrigerator.
  • Keep refrigerators and freezers out of direct sunlight, and allow at least 5 cm all around the unit.

STOVE/OVEN

  • Use small appliances such as a microwave, slow cooker, or toaster oven instead of the oven when possible.
  • Generally, thaw frozen foods in the refrigerator before cooking, unless the label says otherwise.
  • Turn off the oven just before finishing – the oven will remain hot long enough to complete the job.
  • Use the right size pot or pan for the burner and cover pots when you boil water or cook.

DISHWASHER

  • Don’t waste hot water by pre-rinsing dishes before putting them in the dishwasher.
  • Air dry your dishes – you can save 10% of the cost of operation.
  • Load dishes according to manufacturer’s instructions to allow for proper water circulation.
  • Check and clean drains and filters regularly to ensure efficient operation.
  • If you are planning to buy a new dishwasher, consider investing in an ENERGY STAR qualified model, which is at least 25% more efficient.

CLOTHES WASHER & DRYER

  • Make sure clothes are effectively wrung before putting them in the dryer.
  • Separate loads into heavy, medium and lightweight items – lighter loads will take less drying time than a mixture of items.
  • Dry consecutive loads to utilize otherwise wasted heat from the dryer.
  • Get some fresh air! Consider using a clothesline to dry your laundry.
  • Wash clothes in cold or warm water…full loads only & don’t over-dry your clothes. Clean the dryer after each use.

HOME OFFICE & OTHER SAVINGS AROUND THE HOME

  • Consider energy-efficient computer systems and monitors when you replace a system.
  • Be sure to shut off the computer screen, as 60% of the power used by a computer is used by the monitor.
  • Put your home entertainment systems on a power bar and turn off the bar when you are not using them.
  • Unplug infrequently used TV’s, as many continue to draw power even when turned off
  • Put swimming pool pumps on a timer.
  • Use a solar blanket to keep swimming pool water warm overnight.

LIGHTING

  • You can lower overall energy demand by concentrating bright light where you need it.
  • Opening your blinds is a free way to brighten up a room.
  • Decorate your home with illumination in mind.
  • Keep light fixtures clean.
  • Replace your most frequently used incandescent bulbs with compact florescent light bulbs. They use about a third as much electricity, and last 10 times longer.
  • Replace outdoor lighting with motion-detector equipped bulbs or fixtures instead of leaving outside lights on for long periods of time.

 


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