by Ricky Valdez
(San Antonio, Texas, USA)
When it comes to green living, reducing the amount of energy you use is one of the easiest and most effective things you can do.
While electricity itself is not unfriendly to the environment, the production of it is as most of the facilities we use to generate electricity are powered by fossil fuels.
Fossil fuels are not renewable and the output from these facilities produces carbon which leads to global warming.
Luckily, there are several things you can do to reduce your energy consumption and the bonus is that you’ll also save money on your utility bill!
1. If you’re not using it, then unplug it.
Many electronic devices today have LED’s that draw energy even if the device is not powered on. Your VCR, Coffee Maker and even your electric toothbrush all use a little bit of energy when plugged in.
Those little bits can quickly add up, so when your appliances are not in use, try to get into the habit of unplugging them.
2. Shut down your computer.
While it’s nice to have your computer always ready for use, it also uses a lot of electricity. When you go to bed at night, power off the computer, monitor and printer.
3. Get a programmable thermostat.
Getting an automatic thermostat can be a great way to reduce your heating costs, be it from oil, gas or electricity. With a programmable thermostat you can set it to the optimum temperatures and then forget about it.
Set it to 68 degrees Fahrenheit for daytime use when people will be home and 55 degrees Fahrenheit when you are sleeping or at work.
4. Make your water heat more efficient.
Set your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit and get an insulated sleeve for it to insure it is working as efficiently as possible.
5. Use your lighting wisely.
Switch to more energy efficient lighting like LED lights or compact fluorescent lights and be sure that you don’t leave lights on overnight or when no one is in the room.
6. Energy efficient laundry.
Even doing laundry can be an opportunity to save on energy. Make sure you always clean the lint basket after each load and be sure to set the appropriate water level in your washer.
Doing these will help your washer and dryer run more efficiently.
7. Set the right temps in your fridge.
Your refrigerator should be set to around 40 degrees Fahrenheit and your freezer between 0 and 5 degrees Fahrenheit for most efficient use.
Also, make sure you clean out all the dust bunnies behind and underneath the fridge.
8. Don’t run the dishwasher until it is full.
Make sure there is a full load in the dishwasher before you run it and use the energy saving cycle.
9. Buy energy efficient appliance.
Using energy efficient appliances can help reduce energy usage as well as your electric bill so the next time you are in the market for a new appliance, make sure you look at the energy star rating and buy the most efficient model you can afford.
Click here to read more about energy efficient lighting