Reducing your energy usage doesn’t have to take a lot of time or money, or compromise your comfort. Try these simple steps to energy savings in your home.
Standard Energy-Saving Tips
- Use SmartHub to monitor your electricity usage and history. With SmartHub, view easy-to-read usage graphs combined with local weather data to see how changes in temperatures affect your bill. Being aware of your electric usage helps you to take simple actions to save money.
- Set the water heater thermostat to 120 degrees. Save 6 to 10% on your bill.*
- Wash clothes in cold water. It cleans as well as warm and saves on your heating bill.
- Set the refrigerator temperature to 36 to 38 degrees. Set the freezer temperature to 0 to 5.
- Unplug your appliances when they aren’t in use.
- Set your thermostat to 68 degrees in the winter. Each degree dropped will save $40 per year.
- Buy a programmable thermostat. This device saves upwards of $250 per year.*
- Weatherstrip doors and windows. Sealing and insulating a home can reduce heating/cooling costs by 30%. Use insulating blinds/shades. Only 20% of homes built before 1980 are well insulated.
- Electrical outlet seals (foam seals placed behind outlet covers) reduce the amount of air entering the home, especially on outside walls. Give your heating system a break and save money by installing these.
- Install a low-flow showerhead. Save on water and heating.
- Fix leaky faucets. Thirty drops of water a minute can waste up to 50 gallons of water per month.
- Turn off lights when not in use. One bulb left on all year costs $25.*
- About 10% of your energy bill is spent lighting your home. Switching to compact fluorescent lamps can save the average home more than $80 a year.
- Put stereos, computers, etc., on the same power surge protector strip. Turn off when not in use.
- Switch to efficient outdoor lighting. Install a motion-sensor light to decrease energy use.
- Buy an Energy Star washing machine and save $50 a year in utility bills, 7,000 gallons of water, and hours of drying time. Wash with cold water, wash and dry only full loads, and clean the lint filter after each load.
- Buy a dishwasher and save 5,000 gallons of water each year and $40 in utility costs over washing dishes by hand. Use the air-dry option to save even more.
- Nearly 5% of all the energy used in the U.S. is used to air-condition homes. Consider using a fan, or other natural methods before using an air conditioner. Opening windows in the morning to capture cool air, and sealing your house before the heat starts, can reduce electric costs by as much as 25% in the summer months.
- Keep your fridge full – with water. An empty refrigerator wastes energy. Fill the unused space with plastic water jugs to minimize cold air loss.
- Have a chimney? Close the flue when not in use. Never use it? Plug and seal it.
- Weatherize your home with new doors, windows, and insulation. Emerald People’s Utility District can arrange rebates, incentives, and zero-interest loans to qualified applicants.
- Get a free energy audit! Call (541) 746-1583 or email our Energy Services department.
*Source: U.S. Department of Energy
Where is Your Money Going?
Following is a closer look at where the average home uses the most energy:
- Space Heating: 35.2%
- Water Heating: 13.1%
- Space Cooling: 10.8%
- Lighting: 9.7%
- Refrigeration: 6.6%
- Electronics: 6.5%
- Cooking: 4.5%
- Clothes Dryers/Dishwashers: 4.3%
- Computers: 1%
- Other: 8.4%
- Sizzling Sun Tips for Heat Safety (PDF)
- Sizzling Sun Tips to Keep Cool (PDF)
- Seasonal Energy Saving Tips (PDF)
- Vacation Energy Saving Tips (PDF)
- How Much Electricity Do You Use? (PDF)
Have Another Energy Saving Idea?
Submit to us by emailing Emerald and we’ll add it to the list!