October 5th marks the second annual national Energy Efficiency Day. DTE Energy is joining regional and national organizations, businesses, utilities, and individuals working to promote energy efficiency – the quickest way to meet our energy needs, cut consumer bills and reduce pollution.
“Energy efficiency allows customers to control their energy use and see savings on their bill, but also has larger payoff in the effort to reduce our environmental footprint,” said John Boladian, director of energy efficiency at DTE Energy. “The savings start from the moment customers install a high-efficiency light bulb or energy efficient water heater, and lasts over the lifetime of their energy-saving upgrades.”
Small steps add up to big savings. Here are five things you can go home and act on today and see the savings as soon as your next bill:
- Switch to LEDs. LEDs are a great example of how innovation and technology can make your life easier. They last up to 25 times longer and consume 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs.
Tip: By switching five of your home’s most frequently used bulbs with ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs, could save you $70 a year in energy costs. Good news is, LED adoption in the United States increased from 13 million to 78 million in just two years. Make sure you are part of this group too!
- Seal Leaks. On average, heating and cooling account for almost half of a home’s energy consumption. In fact, all the little leaks can be equivalent to leaving open a 3-foot-by-3-foot window.
Tip: Take simple steps like caulking windows, sealing leaks around chimneys and recessed lighting, and sliding draft guards under your doors and you can save up to 20% on heating costs.
- Heat and Cool Efficiently. Don’t waste money heating or cooling an empty home. Install a programmable thermostat and schedule your home’s heat to lower (or raise cooling temp) when you are away or asleep, and turn back up (down) when you are returning home or waking-up.
Tip: Follow the U.S. Department of Energy recommended temperatures (78 degrees in warmer months and 68 degrees in cooler months) and be energy-efficient all year.
- Maintain your HVAC System. Make sure to clean or change your furnace filters regularly. A dirty furnace filter will slow down air flow, making the system work harder to keep you warm and costing you more money.
Tip: Schedule a winter tune-up. Just as a tune-up for your car can improve your gas mileage, a semi-annual or yearly tune-up of your heating and cooling system can improve efficiency, saving you money and making your home more comfortable. Easy!
- Turn off Electronics. That sounds easy, but it is likely that if you go around your house you will find electronics that are plugged in (and still drawing electricity) but not in use.
Tips: Turn off all lights, appliances and electronics not in use. A power strip can help turn off multiple items at once.