This winter, please get ready to go ENERGY STAR. Even if officially begins on December 21st. I know you’re asking why but it’s because well, have you read the Farmer’s Almanac for this winter?!
However, here are some U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ENERGY STAR program top tips to save energy this season. Because the average family spends $2,000 a year on energy bills. That’s with almost half of that amount going to heating and cooling their home.
So please check out ENERGY STAR’s tips and use this infographic to save money. This fall and as you get ready stay warm this winter season.
ENERGY STAR’s Top Eight Tips to Save Energy this Winter
1.) Use a programmable thermostat: Program your thermostat to match your schedule. To maximize savings without sacrificing comfort, program the thermostat to lower the heat by 8 degrees Fahrenheit or more when you’re away from home or asleep, and you can save about $180 per year.
2.) Seal leaks and insulate: Hidden gaps and cracks in a home can add up to as much airflow as an open window and cause your heating system to work harder and use more energy. Sealing and insulating can improve your home “envelope”—the outer walls, ceiling, windows and floors—which will make your home more comfortable and improve the efficiency of your heating system by as much as 20 percent. You can save up to $200 a year by sealing and insulating with ENERGY STAR.
3.) Keep your air filters clean: Check your heating and cooling system’s air filter every month. If the filter looks dirty, change it. At minimum, change the filter every three months. This simple change will help your system work at maximum efficiency—lowering your energy bills and helping your family maintain better indoor air quality.
4.) Tune up your HVAC equipment yearly: Just as a tune-up for your car can improve your gas mileage, a yearly tune-up of your heating and cooling system can improve efficiency and comfort. Learn more here.
5.) Install a door sweep: Door sweeps–or weather stops for garage doors–seal the gap between the bottom of the door and threshold, preventing cold air from coming in and warm air from escaping.
6.) Use your fireplace damper: Fireplace dampers eliminate drafts by sealing your fireplace shut when you’re not using it. Consider using a fireplace “balloon” to make the seal even tighter.
7.) Change a Light: With shorter days and longer nights, many families will turn on more lighting at this time of year. Select ENERGY STAR certified lighting for bulbs that use 75 percent less energy than a standard incandescent and last 10 times longer.
8.) Look for the ENERGY STAR: If your HVAC equipment is more than 10 years old or not keeping your house comfortable. Also please have it evaluated by a professional HVAC contractor before the winter. If it is not performing efficiently or needs upgrading, consider replacing it with a unit that has earned the ENERGY STAR. Depending on where you live this winter, please replace your old heating and cooling system. Especially with ENERGY STAR certified equipment. All because it will cut your annual energy bill by nearly $200.
In conclusion, products, homes and buildings that earn the ENERGY STAR label prevent greenhouse gas emissions. All by meeting strict energy efficiency requirements set by the U.S. EPA. In 2012 alone, Americans, with the help of ENERGY STAR, saved $24 billion on their utility bills. As well as prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to those of 41 million vehicles.
So from the first ENERGY STAR qualified computer in 1992, the ENERGY STAR label can now be found on products in more than 70 different categories. Consequently with more than 4.5 billion sold over the past 20 plus years. Finally, over 1.4 million new homes and as well, 20,000 office buildings, schools and hospitals have earned the ENERGY STAR label.
We use a programmable thermostat (netatmo), that comes in a fancy design by Philip Starck. I can schedule the heating periods with my iPhone, which is pretty convenient and very cool to do at work, when the colleagues are watching. But what really made a difference in terms of heating dollars, was an insulation behind the radiators to block the cold walls and curtains in front of our large windows.
Another way to avoid the chill and protect the climate is to convert your wood-burning fireplace into an Eco-friendly ethanol burning hearth. By simply setting an ethanol burner or grate into your existing fireplace, you eliminate the carcinogens being emitted into the air and your lungs!
You can find out more about this technology at http://www.cleanflames.com
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