Easy energy-saving tips
IF YOU THINK SAVING ENERGY in your home or office is going to require
investments in new equipment and so on, you’re wrong. You can save energy—
and money—with some simple no-cost steps.
This article sponsored by Hunter.® Founded
in 1886 and headquartered in Memphis,
Tennessee, Hunter is the world’s original
ceiling-fan manufacturer. Today, Hunter also
manufactures high-performance air purifiers,
low-maintenance humidifiers, portable fans
and energy-saving thermostats. For more
information, visit www.hunterfan.com.
Flip the switch … on your ceiling fan, that is
A ceiling fan is naturally energy efficient—it circulates air while using
very little electricity. Most people don’t realize a ceiling fan can help warm
you up in the winter as easily as it can cool you down in the summer.
Most ceiling fans have a switch that controls the direction of the blades.
When the fan runs counterclockwise, it blows air down, providing the cooling
effect desired during warmer months. Running the fan clockwise during colder
months circulates the warm air near the ceiling. This makes the room warmer,
which decreases demands on the heating system and allows you to comfortably
turn down your thermostat to save on energy costs. Operated correctly, a ceiling
fan that’s sized appropriately for the room can save you up to 10 percent on
your heating bills.
Get with the program
According to Energy Star,™ while many homes have a programmable
thermostat, approximately 70 percent of consumers find it too difficult to
operate and, as a result, lose out on energy savings. Forgetting to turn down
your thermostat just one time before you leave for work can mean several
dollars in lost energy savings. That’s why a programmable thermostat is so
useful: It doesn’t forget.
Programmable thermostats save energy by offering convenient, prepro-grammed temperature settings that allow you to scale temperatures back as
you leave and warm things up upon your return. When used properly, a programmable thermostat can save you as much as $150 annually in energy costs.
Up to 75 percent of the electricity used to power home electronics is
consumed while the products are turned off. According to the Department of
Energy, power continues to run through your home electronics even when
you have them turned off—yes, even the coffee maker. If 60 percent of your
energy bill is electricity— 15 percent of that from electrical devices—it’s easy
to imagine how much you can save as a result of some simple unplugging.
Among the most common household devices that consume electricity
while not in operation are computers, TVs, cable boxes, cell-phone chargers
and other power adapters, and anything else with a microchip that requires
at least some juice to keep its inner clock ticking. So, while you might think
it’s a nice convenience to have a clock around every corner, if you want
to save money, don’t rely on your VCR or microwave to display the time.
Creating a daily unplugging routine is easy. Go around the house and
unplug devices that do not need to be plugged in, especially those that operate in standby mode, such as computers and home entertainment systems.
According to the National Resources Defense Fund, cable and satellite setup
boxes, and digital video recorders such as TiVo,® are among the worst offenders for using energy when not in use.