◆ Lower your thermostat at night and whenever the house is unoccupied. Close off and don’t heat unoccupied rooms (unless you have a heat pump). If you consistently set your thermostat back at night 10 degrees Fahrenheit, you may reduce your heating bill by 10-20 percent.
◆ Lower the thermostat and dress warmer. As little as 1 to 3 degrees (F) makes a noteworthy difference in energy consumption.
◆ Lower the temperature on your electric water heater to 120 (F) degrees. Turn it off when leaving for extended periods of time. Electric water heaters can be set on timers; gas heaters must be set manually.
◆ Set refrigerator temperatures between 37 and 40 degrees (F). Clean the coils. Keep the refrigerator stocked; it takes more energy to cool an empty refrigerator.
◆ Consider replacing your older model refrigerator, especially if older than 10 years. Older models can often use over 3 times the energy of newer models.
◆ Wash full loads of dishes and air dry.
◆ When washing clothes, use warm or cold water and rinse with cold. Air dry clothes, but not indoors as this creates unwanted mold and moisture problems.
◆ Shut off lights, computers and other electronic appliances when you’re not using them. Many computer monitors have a sleep mode setting which, when activated, greatly reduces energy consumption.
◆ Always use the bathroom or kitchen exhaust fans while showering or cooking and baking to avoid potential moisture problems.
◆ Use a microwave or toaster oven for smaller items.
◆ Install a low-flow showerhead. Showers use less hot water than baths; also consider taking shorter showers.
◆ Close your fireplace damper and seal the opening shut when not in use.
◆ During the heating season, open south-facing window coverings (e.g. drapes, blinds, etc.) during the day. Close all window coverings at night to keep the heat in.
◆ Install foam gaskets behind electric-outlet and switch-plate covers.
◆ Examine and adjust, if necessary, weather stripping, door sweeps, and thresholds.