Seasonal Energy-Saving Tips

Whether you own a home or rent, you can reduce your energy use by following these seasonal energy-saving tips.

Winter

The furnace or boiler is the largest energy user in most homes.

  • ​If health permits, keep thermostat at 68°F or below.

    • Lower thermostat at night and when you're gone (55°F lowest setting).

    • Check the furnace filter once a month during the heating season. Change or clean when dirty.

    • Have a professional tune-up of your heating system every other year.

    • Replace a lower efficiency furnace with one of at least 90% efficiency.

  • Other energy-saving tips include: 

    • Sealing around sewer vent pipe in basement and attic to keep in heated air.

    • Closing fireplace damper after fire is out to stop drafts.

    • Letting the sun in during the day to reduce heating costs.

    • Closing drapes and shades at night to improve comfort.

Spring

  • Seal around the window air conditioning units so cool air cannot escape.
  • Hose off the outdoor central air condensing unit to remove dirt and leaves. Choose a qualified contractor to service for your central air every two years. 
  • Check your furnace filter every month and replace when dirty.
  • Vacuum dust and dirt from the coils and fan of your dehumidifier.

Other energy-saving tips include: 

  • Replace your gas-powered lawn mower with a nonpolluting manual or electric mower.
  • Put up a clothesline for drying laundry outside to avoid heating the house with your clothes dryer.
  • Plant a deciduous shade tree to the south or west of your home to keep it cooler.
  • ​Check gutters and downspouts to make sure they drain away from the house. This reduces moisture around your home’s foundation.

 

Summer

  • Central and room air-conditioning can be your biggest electricity users in the summer.

    • Set your thermostat at 78°F or higher, if health permits.

    • Turn off or set your air conditioner to 85°F when no one is home.

    • Use a programmable or smart thermostat for central air and save between 20 to 60 cents per hour.

  • Other energy-saving tips include: 

    • Use shades and drapes to block out direct sun during the day.

    • Cook outside or with a microwave oven instead of a stove. 

    • Use a whole house fan, room fans or ceiling fans instead of air-conditioning.

    • Replace most frequently used incandescent bulbs and fixtures with ENERGY STAR® certified bulb to save two-thirds of lighting costs.

    • Unplug second refrigerator if not needed. 

    • Turn off appliances including computers and televisions when not in use.

    • Use exhaust fans to remove moisture from showering and cooking.

    • Reduce humidity by reducing sources of moisture, running exhaust fans after showering and cooking and using an ENERGY STAR® rated dehumidifier.