Saving energy doesn’t have to be hard. Understanding where energy is being consumed can help correct habits contributing to higher energy costs. During October’s National Energy Awareness Month, Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is sharing tips on how homeowners can identify what consumes high amounts of energy and how to take corrective actions.
Did you know that even when electronics and appliances aren’t in use they can still draw power just from being plugged in? Or that having an extra fridge can add around $150 a year to your bill? The electricity used by everyday objects can be surprising. Utilizing technology, such as the Watts It Cost energy meter, can help identify a home’s power hogs. It also helps to figure hourly, daily, weekly, monthly or yearly costs for running an appliance. What’s even better, these meters can be borrowed from a local library by checking it out just like you would a book. A full list of participating libraries is available on I&M’s website.
Energy meters help homeowners identify specific appliances or personal practices contributing to extended energy use. Some of these solutions can be reversed by:
- Reconsidering light bulbs. LED bulbs use 90% less energy than typical incandescent bulbs and last 25 times longer. Replacing just five bulbs can save $75 a year.
- Reducing “phantom” energy. Smart Strips help to reduce this type of energy by turning off standby power on electronics (DVD players, video game consoles) when a main device (TV) is off.
- Considering a water-saving showerhead. A family of four, each taking a five-minute shower a day, can save $250 a year in water heating costs by switching to an energy-efficient showerhead.
- Replace inefficient appliances. Aging appliances can be more costly than one would think. When purchasing a replacement, look for the ENERGY STAR logo and choose a capacity that’s right for your household.
Homeowners can utilize I&M’s Marketplace to jumpstart energy-savings. This online shopping tool helps customers make informed, energy-wise purchase decisions. The Marketplace is intended for the benefit of I&M customers but is available for all visitors. A full list of appliances, electronics and more is available on the Marketplace website.
A reminder that homeowners are invited to complete a short “Thermostat Never Have I Ever” survey to reveal what their unique comfort level is during colder months. This survey is available through October 15. I&M customers completing the survey will be entered to win one of five $50 Amazon.com gift cards.
For additional energy-saving tips, head to ElectricIdeas.com/Home or ElectricIdeas.com/Work to find products, rebates and discounts.
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