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Top 4 easy, moneysaving moves you can make now to decrease energy use

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Going green doesn't have to involve significant time and expense. Earth Week is a great time to get started, but you can conserve energy in a few small ways and save money at the same time. The following tips cost either nothing or very little up front, but the money savings can add up quickly over time.

Use cold water for laundry
Use cold water for laundry Procter & Gamble

Use cold water for laundry

Switch to cold water to wash your clothes. According to Procter & Gamble, makers of Tide Coldwater Clean laundry dergent,  80 percent of the energy used in the wash process goes toward heating the water. Tide is promoting cold water washing and their Tide Coldwater Clean product this week with their #TurnToCold campaign.

 

Use your TV's sleep timer
Use your TV's sleep timer Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Use your TV's sleep timer

Use the sleep timer on your television set. Nearly all televisions, even many older ones, have sleep timers. If you feel like you need to have the television set on while falling asleep, set the sleep timer to turn it off after 60 or 90 minutes.

TV manufacturers base the numbers on their yellow Energy Guide sticker on an average of five hours a day of viewing time. Depending on your daytime viewing habits, TV size and local electricity rates, you could pay $50 or even $100 more per year by leaving the television set run all night.

 

Recycle more
Recycle more Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images

Recycle more

Quickly find out where you can recycle anything from electronics to auto parts using the iRecycle app (free for iOS and Android). If your city has a recycling program, check the city's Web site for a list of acceptable items, to see if there's anything else you could start dropping into your bin.

Try rechargeable batteries
Try rechargeable batteries Matthew Lloyd/Getty Images

Try rechargeable batteries

If you have kids or grandkids who seem to need fresh batteries for something every few days, check out the options for rechargeable ones. Many toys take AA batteries, and you can pick up a set of batteries and a charger fairly cheaply from Amazon.

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