Living Room Savings Tips
- Avoid phantom loads by unplugging electronics when not in use or by using a power strip. Too busy to unplug them or flip the switch on the power strip? Try using a smart strip. A smart strip from Smart Home USA is a power strip that turns off devices automatically when they aren't being used.
- Lower your thermostat to 68ºF during the winter months and raise your thermostat to 78ºF during the summer months. Find out how much you can save by simply adjusting your thermostat calculator. Replace a manual thermostat with a programmable one. Or take the time to adjust the temperature at night and when gone for long periods of time.
- Use a ceiling fan to circulate the air, allowing additional comfort in your room.
- Look for ENERGY STAR® certified home electronics. ENERGY STAR certified televisions use about 40% less energy than standard units. You can find ENERGY STAR certified on everything from standard TVs, to HD-ready TVs, to the largest flat-screen plasma TVs.
- Heating systems, especially forced air furnaces, dry out the air in a home. Dry air feels colder than moist air at the same temperature. Use a humidifier to add the correct amount of moisture to indoor air, making it feel comfortable at a lower temperature.
- Clean the air vents regularly. Make sure drapes and furniture do not block the air vents or returns.
- When entertaining in your home, turn down the thermostat a degree or two before your guests arrive. The additional body heat will make up the difference.
- If you have a fireplace, make sure the flue damper is closed tightly when not in use to prevent heated or air-conditioned air from escaping through the chimney.
- Use insulated drapes to block the sun during summer months and to help keep the heat in during the winter months.
- Substitute ENERGY STAR certified lighting fixtures for old, inefficient ones.
- Replace frequently used light bulbs with compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs.
- Replace your old ceiling fan and light kit with an ENERGY STAR certified ceiling fan with CFL lights.
- For air conditioners, look for the highest Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). The higher the SEER rating, the less energy it uses to cool. Older units may have a SEER rating of 8, while ENERGY STAR models must be a 14 SEER rating or higher. Improvements in technology have pushed some ENERGY STAR certified units over a 25 SEER rating.
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