10 Tips to Save Energy this Holiday

  1. Avoid using your oven. Cooking with a crock-pot or microwave is more energy-efficient than using your oven. We’re lucky to live in a climate where we can grill year round!
  2. Give a nod to your childhood and opt for decorations that don’t light up. Think wreaths, garland, strings of popcorn, nutcrackers or candles.
  3. Those decorations that do light up — use a power strip because even when switched off, your electrical décor still consumes small amounts of electricity. Stop the waste by plugging all of your decorations into power strips. When you switch off the strip, all of your lighted decor will stop draining electricity from the wall outlet. Bonus tip: Unplug electronics before leaving town. TVs, DVD players, computers, printers, radios and many other electronics use energy even when they aren’t turned on. Take the time to disconnect these phantom energy users before going away for the holidays.
  4. Use a timer for your lights. You’ve got enough to remember this holiday season. Turning off your lights doesn’t need to be one of them.
  5. Speaking of lights, LED holiday lights use up to 90% less electricity than standard incandescent lights. Yes, the initial cost of LED light strings is higher but  they are sturdier and last up to 10x longer. Also, LED bulbs are cooler to the touch than incandescent bulbs, posing less risk of fire. Maybe it’s time to bite the bullet and invest in this long-term savings.
  6. It’s also beneficial to know when electricity peak hours are in your city so you can avoid turning on lights at those times, as higher demand means higher prices. During the holidays, we tend to spend more on energy bills from all the cooking, cleaning, heating and, of course, lighting. That’s why using electricity and natural gas more strategically can help you save.
  7. Is your thermostat programmable? Time to put that feature to work! Programming it to lower the temperature at certain times of the day (like when you’re at work or sleeping) can save you more than 15% on energy costs. Time to upgrade? We can help with that. Bonus tip: Lower the thermostat when the party starts. While hosting guests, turn down the heat since holiday cooking and having a few extra warm bodies automatically raises the temperature in your home.
  8. Don’t let those sunny days go to waste! Keep drapes and blinds open during the day to let that sunshine naturally warm your house. Psst, but remember to close them at night to cut down on drafts from cold windows.
  9. Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is burning. Keeping the damper open is like leaving a window wide open because it allows air to escape out of the chimney.
  10. Turn home lighting off  when the tree is lit. Enjoy the ambiance from the tree illumination and cut down on waste.