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6 ways to save energy

The cost of food and energy is predicted to undergo a sharp increase over the next few years, forcing many families to look for any possible way to save money. Fortunately, there are plenty of small ways to save money on a big expense; your electric bill. Try these six tips to save some money.

  1. Regularly replace the weather stripping around your home’s doors and windows, or insist that your landlord do this for you at least once a year. Weather sealing kits can be bought at a hardware store and cost less than $20. They’re also easy to use. Since it is estimated that over half of home’s air is lost through windows and doors, you’ll typically make back the money you spent within a month or two.

  2. Quit using your clothes dryer. Analysts have estimated that an electric clothes dryer will cost an additional $25 a month on an electric bill. Additionally, in the summertime the dryer produces heat that your air conditioner has to work to cool down. This increases your electric bill even more. Use a clothesline or an indoor drying rack to save money.

  3. Unplug your TV when you’re not watching it, or at plug it into a power strip that can be turned off when you’re not watching it. It’s estimated that a large screen TV will increase a typical household’s electric bill by 10%. Almost 40% of this electricity is being wasted when the TV is not switched on.

  4. Buy and install a programmable thermostat. Unlike in the past, today’s programmable thermostats cost around $75, and you don’t have to hire an HVAC technician to install it. Set the air conditioner to keep your house at 82 degrees when all the residents are at work or school. This one step can save a family about 20% off its electric bill. Be careful not to go above 85 degrees, since high temperatures can damage electronics. The best part of making this change is that your family will probably never notice it.

  5. Make a small adjustment to your water heater’s thermostat. Heating water is the second largest user of electricity in a typical household. Setting this thermostat a few degrees cooler can save you money. Try not to go above 125 degrees.

  6. Purchase a new jacket for your water heater, too. An insulating water heater jacket costs just a few dollars at a hardware store, but it can increase the efficiency of your water heater by 35%.

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