of all electricity produced at power plants in the U.S. is used
in the home. Families who reduce their energy use by avoiding waste
and buying energy-efficient appliances can save money and help preserve
natural resources used to make electricity.
Here are some easy things you can do on
your own to save energy at home:
Turn off the lights when they are not being used.
- Do not open windows or leave the
door open when your heater/furnace is working.
- Turn off small home appliances and
equipment when not in use, such as computers, radios, TVs, etc.
- In winter, open drapes on sunny days
to help warm the house.
Don't leave the hot water running if you don't need it, as that
wastes both water and energy. It takes natural gas or electricity
to heat the water.
Here are some energy-saving tips you can
tell your parents about:
When shopping for new appliances and electronics, look for the
ENERGY STAR® label. Visit www.energystar.gov
for recommended model names.
- Set your home heating thermostat
at 68 degrees or lower during the day and 55 degrees for the night.
Set your home cooling thermostat at 78 degrees or higher when
you're home; 85 degrees when you're away.
- Use deciduous trees and plants (those
that lose their leaves in winter) to shade your home and windows
from the sun and reduce energy used by air conditioning.
Use special light bulbs that are energy-efficient. These are called
compact fluorescents, or CFLs.
- Provide shading for your air conditioner,
being careful not to block air to or from the unit. Clean or replace
air conditioner filters monthly during operating season.
- If the coils on your refrigerator
are exposed, keep them clean. Give the unit at least 4" of
breathing room from the rear wall, and don't set the temperature
too low. Unplug and recycle your second refrigerator.
- Install a low-flow showerhead and
aerators in the bathroom and kitchen sinks to reduce the amount
of water used. It takes energy to heat up hot water.
- Do only full loads when using the
clothes washer. Wash in cold water with cold water detergent,
or wash in warm water and rinse in cold.
Dry only full loads. Clean the dryer lint trap after each use.
Or, line dry your clothes.
- Wash only full loads in the dishwasher.
Use the energy saver, air dry cycle. Or, if allowed, open the
door and let dishes dry naturally.
- Don't preheat your oven. Cook complete
meals of several dishes simultaneously in the oven. Use the microwave
- Close the damper when not using the
fireplace. Turn heat down when using the fireplace.