Simple Ways to Reduce Energy Use

by Marsha Charles 04/26/2020

Image by Marie-Flore Pirmez from Unsplash

Going green sounds like a big, lofty goal. For many, it brings thoughts of installing solar panels or upgrading entire HVAC systems to be more eco-friendly. While these are helpful tasks, there are many little things you can do right now to “go green” at home. If you want to make a big difference in the environment, start small with these surprising electricity savers.

1. Install a Programmable Thermostat

Your AC uses quite a bit of your energy, and so does electric heat. In fact, the Residential Energy Consumption Survey indicates that 48 percent of the energy use in American homes comes from heating and cooling spaces. A programmable thermostat allows you to set your system to a more eco-friendly level, so you’re not heating and cooling it too much when you’re sleeping or away from home.

2. Turn on the Ceiling Fan (and Turn It off Too)

A ceiling fan is a great way to make you feel cooler in a room even when the air conditioner is set at a higher temperature. However, ceiling fans only help if you’re actually in the room, because they don’t actually lower the temperature. They simply change the way you feel. When you leave the room, turn the fan off. You’ll save about $7 a month on electricity by not running it when you’re not enjoying it.

3. Vacuum Refrigerator Coils

A refrigerator’s coils, often on the back of the refrigerator, are essential to its cooling process, and they’re also a dust and dirt magnet. Many people forget about them, because they are completely out of sight. Once every three months, pull the refrigerator out and clean the coils with the vacuum. This will help your refrigerator use less energy. Set a reminder on your phone so you don’t forget this important task.

4. Check for Energy Vampires

When you plug an electronic into the wall, your electricity will constantly flow through the cord, to the device, and back to the wall. If the device is off, this cycle continues, and some of the electricity is lost. In fact, as much as 75 percent of the electrical use from your home electronics occurs when the device is off, and these are called “energy vampires.” There are two easy ways to stop this problem. First, consider plugging all of your devices into surge protector power strips. When you’re not using them, switch the strip off. A smart power strip is another option. These will cut the power to the devices when you turn the device off, so you don’t have to remember to switch the strip on and off.

Saving electricity at home starts with making smart choices. Use these ideas, and start watching your energy bills drop.

About the Author
Author

Marsha Charles

Consistent top listing and selling agent receiving Chairman's Club award for superior sales achievement almost evey year while associated with Preferred Properties, Inc. Consistently receive the International Presidents Premier award for sales volume since joining Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage and ranked in the top 1% of agents in Connecticut and Westchester County. Received recognition as a Top Five Sales Recepient for customer satisfaction since 2010 and listed in Westchester and Connecticut Magazine. Member Top Agents in Connecticut listed by Real Trends. Works with Sellers and Buyers with a strong understanding and attention to needs of those who are relocating . Background and experience in advertising, public relations and photography offer creative and innovative marketing plans for sellers. Realtor designations include: Graduate Real Estate Institute, Certified Residential Specialist, Certified Residential Marketing Specialist. Served as President of New Canaan Board of Realtors,Currently serve as director of the New Canaan Board of Realtors and chairman member of the Professional Standards committee. Named Realtor of the year by the New Canaan Board of Realtors. Married and the Mother of four children who attended and graduated from the New Canaan School System .Member of New Canaan, Darien, Greenwich and Statewide MLS systems. Areas covered include New Canaan, Darien, Greenwich, Rowayton,Norwalk, Wilton and all of lower Fairfield County.