Don … Here are the tips I talked about awhile back. Use them if you like.. James
MONEY SAVING TIPS
1. Your dad was right, if you’re not in the room the light should be out. Burning lights that no one is using not only wastes the electricity used by the bulb, but makes your air conditioner work harder to cool the air the bulb heats up. Ditto for TV sets.
2. Where possible, replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs. Although they cost a little more initially, they last for years and use about ¼ of the amount of electricity incandescent bulbs do.
3. Keep your freezer full. When you open the door all the cold air leaves and has to be re-cooled after it is closed. Reducing the volume of air reduces the work your freezer has to do. Filling up empty spaces even with such things as old milk cartons filled with water is efficient and provides great coolers for ice chests, and during power outages, your refrigerator.
4. Turn your thermostat up in the summer months. A couple of degrees can make a lot of difference on your bill. If it begins to feel a little warm between times you’re A/C comes on, place a fan in the room where you are and let it circulate the air. It feels good and seriously reduces electricity usage. Do the reverse in winter. Long sleeves or a sweater will keep you comfortable.
5. Build and use a solar powered clothes dryer. Parts needed: rope, clothespins, two trees. Total cost–$4.36. If trees are not available, posts will work just as well, but may run up the cost by a few dollars. Your grandma probably used a clothesline, but that is so 20th century.
6. During hot weather close the shades/curtains on sides of the house where the sun is shining in. The same solar power that runs your new dryer will also put heat in your home. During cold weather, put the sun to work in your home by opening the shades/curtains and letting the sun do what it does best.
7. Have you’re A/C serviced once a year. Removing all the stuff it collected from the air will allow air to flow more freely and make it more efficient. In Oklahoma, it’s cottonwood seeds that plug it up. The money spent on a serviceman will be made back pretty quickly and will extend the life of you’re A/C unit.
8. Change you’re air conditioner/heating unit’s filter regularly. Same results as number 7.
9. Keep vegetation from around your outside A/C unit. Same results as number 7.
10. Plant a deciduous tree on the west side of your house if possible. During the summer the leaves will shade your home from the heating rays of the sun. In winter, the leaves will be gone and let the sun shine through.
11. If you don’t have double pane windows, have storm windows installed. They are great at reducing heating/cooling loss by creating a dead air space between the panes of glass, much like a thermos works. But remember, they only work if they are closed. (Kids have a really hard time with this one.)
12. On nice days or nights when the weather is cooperating, turn off the A/C and let mother nature provide the cooling along with fresh oxygen for no additional charge. When going back to A/C, don’t forget to close the storm windows!
13. Check the insulation in your attic. The most efficient use of insulation is in your attic. Remember high school science? Warm air rises, and your warm air will too, going right on through to your attic space where it won’t help you at all. Meanwhile, your heating unit will be running more, thus using more energy and decreasing the life of the heating unit. Attic insulation usually pays for itself in one winter.
14. Caulk around your windows and outside doors. Caulking is cheap and will stop those drafts that run your bill up and give your kids the sniffles..
15. Check the thermostat on your hot water tank. Heating water too hot not only costs extra money, it can be dangerous to small kids.
Here is one more tip. It won’t save you money, but your dog will appreciate it during the hot months. Place a small pan below the pipe where your air conditioner’s condensation drips out. It will fill quickly and overrun, thus keeping cool fresh water for your dog during the heat of the day while you may be away.
Doing these things will make a sizeable reduction in your energy bills and are earth-friendly. Many cost very little or nothing. The savings derived from doing them can fund the ones that cost more. Becoming energy efficient is not an event, it’s a process.
WARNING: FOLLOWING THESE TIPS MAY BE DETRIMENTAL TO YOUR LOCAL UTILITY COMPANY‘S PROFIT MARGIN!
Thanks James, there are certainly some good items in there.