A couple of weeks ago the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the Ad Council launched a national education campaign to help consumers save money on utility bills. Videos, tips, an “energy savings IQ” quiz, and a photo gallery on Facebook—as well as videos posted on You Tube—are designed to save money by saving energy.
While this idea isn’t new to Energy Savers, the concept is gaining ground as more and more people realize how easy it is.
"Americans spend about $2,000 per household on energy every year—but many of them could save a few hundred of that without changing their lifestyle," says Energy Secretary Steven Chu. "Many American families can take simple steps to reduce their energy bill, while making their homes more comfortable, and use that money for something they really need or want."
Examples of some of these steps include:
- Installing a programmable thermostat to keep your house comfortably warm in the winter and comfortably cool in the summer, which could save you more than $100 a year on heating and cooling bills.
- Upgrading 15 of the traditional light bulbs in your home, which could save you about $50 per year.
- Turning off your computer and monitor when they’re not in use and plugging home electronics, such as TVs and DVD players, into power strips—and turning the power strips off when the equipment is not in use.
- Lowering the thermostat on your hot water heater to 120°F.
- Taking short showers instead of baths.
- Washing only full loads of dishes and clothes.
- Driving sensibly. Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration and braking) wastes gasoline.
- Looking for the ENERGY STAR label on home appliances and products. (Note: Be sure to check out products recognized as the ENERGY STAR Most Efficient in 2011.)
For more information on how to save money and energy at home, visit the Energy Savers website.
Chris Stewart is a senior communicator at DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory, which assists EERE in providing technical content for many of its websites.