6 Ways to Be More Energy Efficient at Home

Being more energy efficient is the best way to meet our energy needs and reduce pollution. It can result in some serious savings, too.  Here are six ways that you can save more energy at home.

By Nora Zacharski, ELPC Intern 

1. Eliminate Vampire Energy

Leaving your devices plugged into outlets all day sucks up a lot of energy, even if they are turned off. This is known as “Vampire Power” or “Phantom Load”. Try plugging your devices into a power strip so you can easily unplug them each day before you leave.

2. Switch to LED’s

One of the easiest ways to save both money and energy is by switching to LED light bulbs. These light bulbs usually use between 25% and 80% less energy than normal bulbs. They also last 3 to 35 times as long as other types, saving you not only money but another trip to the store.

3. Install a Smart Thermostat

After lighting waste, heating and cooling unoccupied rooms is the number-one way consumers waste energy. Smart thermostats are a great energy-saving solution. These wi-fi enabled devices connect with an app on your smartphone or tablet, allowing you to monitor and control your heating and cooling while saving money. With so many smart thermostats on the market, check out this Energy Star certified list of rebate-eligible smart thermostats.

4. Be Intentional with Blinds

Leaving your blinds closed in the summer keeps out the heat and cools off your home. It also makes it easier for your air conditioner to keep your space at a comfortable temperature. In the winter, keeping blinds open lets the sun naturally warm your home, and helps you save on heating costs.

5. Become an Energy Star All-Star

When possible, try to buy appliances that are Energy Star rated. Energy Star is a program run by the EPA and Department of Energy that certifies products are energy efficient. The average household with certified appliances sees $500 in savings every year

6. Consider an Energy Audit

If you have taken all the steps to be energy efficient and want to do more, or aren’t sure where to start on your energy-efficient mission, an energy audit may be helpful. An auditor will evaluate your home and find areas that may be wasting energy, as well as offer ways to fix them.

Check out this website for more energy-saving tips AND learn more about the work the ELPC is doing to advocate for energy efficiency across the Midwest here.