4 Ways to Save Energy You Haven’t Already Heard

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The average U.S. household spends $5,550 per year on energy, according to the Alliance to Save Energy. Finding ways to conserve energy will not only save you money, it will also help our environment. More energy usage means we need to produce or import more energy sources like oil, natural gas and coal. So, by conserving energy, we are able to keep more resources on the earth longer. To help you with that, we’ve found four ways to save energy that go beyond those tips to unplug electronics and turn down the thermostat in the winter (though you should do those, too!).

1. Rearrange your furniture.

According to Energy.gov, placing things that heat up, like lamps or TVs, near your thermostat sensor can cause the air conditioner to run longer than necessary. The reason? The thermostat senses heat from the appliances. Rearrange those items and you’ll save energy.

2. Plug electronics into a power strip.

This makes it more convenient to switch everything off when you’re not using it. This easy tip alone can save you up to 12 percent off your electric bill every year. Need another example? Leaving your computer on all day can cost about 21 cents per day, which is about $75 per year. How many computers do you keep on in your home?

3. Do NOT close heat registers in rooms you’re not using if you have a forced-air furnace.

The reason? Your furnace is designed to heat a specific square footage of space and can’t sense when a register is closed. This means it will continue working the same as if all the registers were open. Also, and the main reason not to close those registers, the cold air from unheated rooms can escape into the rest of the house, reducing the effectiveness of your insulating and other weatherizing efforts. And remember to seal air leaks and properly insulate your home, as this will help keep your home comfortable and will save you up to 20 percent on your heating and cooling bills, according to the Alliance to Save Energy.

One more thing about those registers: Make sure that your furniture and other objects aren’t blocking the airflow to and from your registers.

4. Use your ceiling fan alongside A/C.

In those hot summer months when you’re using the air conditioning, a ceiling fan will allow you to raise the thermostat setting about 4°F without anyone feeling the difference. Just remember when you’re not using a room to turn off your ceiling fan.

Feature image courtesy of Shutterstock

Read More:
Energy-Saving Technologies You Should Adopt
4 Tips to Create an Energy-Efficient Office
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Wendy Gabriel

Wendy Gabriel is a freelance eco-writer based in California. Wendy's work has been featured in numerous publications and websites, including the Chicago Sun-Times, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Fox Business News and Mashable.com. For nearly six years, she was a weekly contributor on a popular radio talk show in the Upper Midwest with a segment titled “Simple Tips for Green Living.”