How to Save Energy and Reduce Your Bills

Free Tip#1 – Set thermostat at 78 degrees when home
Free Tip #2 – 80 degrees when not home

Surveying Your Home’s Energy Use:
from lighting to laundry

With the cost of energy skyrocketing, more and more homeowners are taking the initiative in reducing their energy usage. You can, too. The first step is to conduct a general energy analysis of your home. There are many online tools available that can help you do this or you can create your own survey by looking at these five main energy-use categories.

HEATING AND COOLING

Your heating and cooling system is the biggest energy guzzler in your home, gobbling up to 45% of your total energy costs every year. It’s always wise to have our heating and cooling professionals analyze your system, but here’s a way you can quickly determine how energy-wise it is. If your system is older than 10 years, it’s needlessly eating up your energy dollars. New systems are at least 20 to 30% more efficient than older systems. If it’s not time to replace your home’s comfort system there are interim ways to trim energy use. First of all regular maintenance is key to getting the best performance you can, regardless of your system’s age. And if we haven’t already installed a programmable thermostat for you, call us to do so. It can save you at least $100 a year in energy dollars.

HOME APPLIANCES

The next big category of energy use includes your washer and dryer, dishwasher, refrigerator and water heater. Together, these appliances account for about 29% of your total energy expenditure. When you buy an appliance, remember it has two prices: the cost to purchase it and the cost to operate it. That’s why, when it’s time to replace any major appliance, consider replacing it with an Energy Star-qualified product. Energy Star appliances use between 10% and 50% less energy and water than standard models.

LIGHT BULBS AND FIXTURES

Survey all the light fixtures in your home and make this quick fix – determine the five you use the most and replace the bulbs in those fixtures with compact fluorescent light bulbs. That simple change alone just saved you $60.

HOME ELECTRONICS

Did you know 75% of the electricity use to power your home’s electronics is consumed while the products are turned off?! This energy use powers peripheral features such as remote controls and clocks. Purchasing only energy efficient products can save you money because they use up to 50% less energy to handle these same functions.

HOME OFFICE EQUIPMENT

Don’t leave your computer on – even in low-power “sleep” mode – it’s still using electricity. And, as you’ve seen in the other four categories, you should always think about energy use while you’re shopping for a product – not afterwards when you get it home.

Remember, we’re here to take care of all your home comfort needs. Call us today to help with your home energy analysis.

A few good reasons to take a closer look at your old, inefficient heating and air system

  • It is probably costing you too much to operate!
  • A new, high efficient system can save you up to 50%
  • If your old system is nearing the end of it’s life
  • Will your old system make it through another summer without a service call?
  • Have you already invested in costly repairs? Money that is gone forever!
  • Have you been forced to sacrifice your comfort with inadequate heating & cooling?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, we want you to know the following!

  • SMUD’s replacement program is for homeowners just like you!
  • SMUD wants you to save electricity!
  • Your present heating and cooling system is probably the biggest power consumer in your home!
  • SMUD’s program is VERY EASY for you to capitalize on!
  • No money down, low interest rate, no prepayment penalty, generous cash rebates!
  • Your new high efficient system will help make your monthly payment with the utility savings it can deliver!
  • If you think your existing system is not that expensive to run, you might be surprised! An even lower monthly bill can be attained with a high efficiency system!

Cooling Survey/Reduce Energy Bills

Other tips for saving energy dollars during the hot summer months include…

  • If you use a central air conditioner, use a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust your home’s temperature at night, while you’re at work or on vacation, to save annually on energy bills.
  • Keep window coverings closed during the day to reduce heat build-up.
  • Don’t over cool. Keep in mind that turning your thermostat down to a lower than comfortable temperature won’t cool your home any faster.
  • Use ceiling and oscillating fans whenever possible
  • Trees provide shading and cooling. Strategically planting three trees around the house can save between $100 and $250 annually in cooling and heating costs. Daytime air temperatures can be three to six degrees cooler in tree-shaded neighborhoods.