There are four principal means of reducing energy consumption:
- Improving the building envelop through “weatherization”
- Simply conserving, by using less
- Making buildings more efficient, and
- Managing your consumption through load management options.
Reduce leaks from electrical outlets, switch plates, window frames, baseboards, doors, fireplaces, attics, wall- or window-mounted air conditioners, improper or insufficient insulation, and sealing duct work.
For example, the potential energy savings from reducing drafts in a home may range from 5 to 30% per year.
Turn off/unplug lights and appliances when not in use
Adjust thermostats (For each degree the thermostat is lowered for a 24 hour period you can save as much as 3% of your total energy usage during that 24 hours)
Put computers in sleep mode when not in use
Replace incandescent light bulbs with CFLs or LEDs (Artificial lighting consumes almost 15% of a household's electricity use; use of new lighting technologies can reduce lighting energy use in homes by 50 - 75%)
Use Energy Star appliances (Appliances and home electronics are responsible for about 20 percent of the average homeowners’ energy bill; replacing old appliances with new Energy Star appliances can save 20 percent or more in operating expenses.
Replace inefficient HVAC equipment (Replacing an older inefficient unit with a new high efficiency furnace or air conditioner can save between 10 and 30% in energy costs)
Load Management/Demand-Side Management
Electricity utilities can use smart meters and real time usage data to automatically signal your water heater or central air conditioning/heat pump cooling unit to reduce consumption, thereby reducing load during periods of peak demand and saving ratepayers money on relatively higher priced electricity.
For more information, please visit www.energysavers.gov or call (302)735-3480.