NDSU Extension Service - Ramsey County

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Home's Energy Efficiency

Home’s Energy Efficiency

 

                Winter has been slow in arriving this year but we all know that much colder temperatures are on their way.  Cold weather time is an excellent time to improve your home’s energy efficiency. According to the United States Department of Energy, 46% of your utility bill goes to heating and cooling your home. There are several no-cost or low-cost improvements that you can make to your home to reduce those winter heating bills.

                Adjust your thermostat, setting it as low as you find to be comfortable during the winter. A programmable thermostat allows you to automatically set the thermostat to turn the heat or air conditioning up or down when you are not home. By adjusting the temperature during the day while you are at work, the Department of Energy estimates a 10% savings in utility bills.

                Replace or clean furnace filters on a monthly basis.

                Caulk between your window/door frames and walls.

                Weather‐strip between doors and frames.

                Add storm windows or use plastic film kits to cover single‐pane windows.

                Keep the window coverings on south‐facing windows open during the day to allow sunlight to warm your house. On the flip side, remember to close drapes and shades in the evening to keep out the cooler night air.

                If you are thinking about purchasing a large durable appliance, consider Energy Star qualified products. Energy‐efficient appliances include high‐efficiency furnaces, air conditioners, and heat pumps, clothes dryers with moisture sensors, and clothes washers and dishwashers that save water. For additional information on Energy Star appliances, check their web site at: www.energystar.gov.

                 Turn off lights and electronics when not in use.

                 Reduce the setting on your hot water heater to 120 degrees. Insulate your water heater tank, and hot water pipes.

                 Use good laundering techniques. Pretreat stains, sort clothes, and follow product (stain removers, detergent, bleach, fabric softener, etc.) recommendations to avoid a second wash or rinse.

                Read the manufacturer’s instructions for appliances. Washing machines and dishwashers often have cycles that use less water.

 

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