1. Use a smart power strip
Your power strip protects your appliances from an electrical surge. An advanced power strip has three distinct plug categories. The power strip automatically turns specific appliances on and off based on the category. For example, when your TV is off, the advanced power strip turns off your DVD player and game console. Depending on the type of power strip you have, it may do all the thinking for you. The different kinds of advanced power strips are illustrated in this helpful infographic by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
2. Use a programmable thermostat
During long Indianapolis winters like this one, you don’t want to come home to a cold house. So, you leave the heat on when you’re gone - even if it is wasteful. A programmable thermostat can automatically lower your home’s temperature while you’re away at work. And, before you return home, it can raise the temperature back to your desired setting. This saves you both energy and money - and, you won’t have to come home to a cold house. Check out the complete list of Honeywell programmable thermostats here.
With home automation options such as the ones included with the Honeywell Total Connect app, you can set up your security system to adjust the temperature based on your schedule. If you have environmental sensors installed, it can even send you notifications when the temperature drops dangerously low while you’re away. Learn more about Honeywell’s home automation solutions here.
3. Make sure your ceiling fans are on the right setting
Did you know? Ceiling fans turn in two directions. One direction pushes air down. The other draws air up. During the winter, make sure your fan is pushing warm air near the ceiling down into the room. You’ll want to turn the rotation to clockwise and set the fan at a low speed to create an updraft. The switch to change the rotation direction should be near the fan blades.
Your home will use less energy to regulate the temperature, and you’ll be more comfortable.
4. Vacuum and dust your refrigerator coils and fan
Dirt and dust buildup on your fan can decrease airflow and affect the fan’s balance. This can contribute to premature failure of the compressor. Dusting the blades keeps the fan in top condition, saving energy.
Dust can find its way in and build up on your refrigerator’s coil. In order for your refrigerator to run efficiently and last longer, gently vacuum and dust these parts. Don’t forget to unplug the fridge before you clean.
5. Insulate your home
Make sure doors and windows are properly sealed to prevent cold drafts and air leaks. Use caulking or weather stripping to cover every last crack. Keep warm air inside during freezing winter by adding new or additional insulation to your ceilings, attic, and walls.
6. Switch from incandescent to fluorescent
Using 75% less energy and lasting 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs, compact fluorescents may cost more initially, but are worth the savings. They can have an impact in overall energy usage even if you use a mix of fluorescent and incandescent lighting.
7. Replace furnace air filters
The furnace filter should be replaced every two to three months. Otherwise, dirt, dust, and pet hair caught in the filter can make your furnace work harder, using more energy. Consider replacing it when the winter season begins and again when it ends.
8. Install low-flow showerheads
Most conventional showerheads use 5 gallons of water per minute. Installing a low-flow showerhead can reduce that water consumption. It only uses 1.5 gallons per minute!
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