Can Small Changes Save You Some Cash

You don't have to spend a dime to noticeably reduce your home's utility bills. Here are some easy lifestyle choices worth adopting:

  • If your dishwasher has an energy-saving feature, use it. Don't run the washer until it is completely full, then use the shortest cycle that will get the dishes clean.
  • Set the refrigerator's temperature to 40 and the freezer to 0. Use the "efficiency" setting if it has one.
  • Use small appliances whenever possible--toaster ovens, microwaves, pressure cookers.
  • Turn your electric oven off several minutes before cooking is completed--heat is retained for quite a while after the oven is turned off.
  • Cook outdoors during summer and consider eating more no-cook dishes such as salads.
  • Turn your water heater's temperature down to 120 degrees F, even 115 degrees F (the factory setting is often 140 degrees F.). Turn it way down or off when you're away from your home on business trips or vacations.
  • Take showers instead of baths. Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth or shaving.
  • Use your washing machine's cold-wash setting whenever possible. Use the warm or cold setting on your dryer, or hang your clothes on a line to dry.
  • Turn off lights when you leave a room. Use lower-wattage bulbs throughout the house or switch from incandescent bulbs to compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs), which can cut lighting bills by 50% and last 10 times longer.
  • Set your thermostat to 55 degrees F in winter or 80 degrees F in summer for long absences--work, vacations or business trips.
    Make sure air registers are not blocked by furniture or curtains.
    Close drapes, blinds or shades during the hottest part of the day in summer and the coldest part of the day in winter--or all day long if you're not going to be there.

If there is anything else that you can think of please let me know.

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