You may have already begun thinking about your new year’s resolutions. Perhaps you are resolving to eat fewer sweets, exercise more or manage your finances better. But for those of you still looking for some ideas regarding the changes you make in 2014, we propose a new resolution: Use less energy. Below, we have provided several actions you can take around your home that require little or no retrofit work to reduce your energy consumption and save on electricity costs.
1. Get into the habit of setting back the thermostat when you’re not home or at night when everyone is asleep. The longer it is set back, the more you save. Install a programmable thermostat to make the savings automatic!
2. Unplug second refrigerators and freezers. Some have very little in them and you may be able to consolidate those items into one main cooling unit.
3. Turn your furnace fan to its “auto” setting rather than “on” for significantly less energy use.
5. Use a surge strip when plugging in office equipment and entertainment centers. When not in use, simply shut off the surge strip.
6. If you use a block heater on your car, consider installing a timer so it is only on for a couple of hours before you plan on starting the vehicle as opposed to being in use all night.
8. Allow your dishes to air dry instead of using the drying cycle on your dishwasher and try to only wash full loads.
9. Sign up for SmartHub on our website, which gives you online account access. There, you can pay your bill, check your use or contact CCEC about any account issues. The information you will find on SmartHub serves as a great tool for helping you break down your energy use.
10. Consider hiring a contractor to help with some more permanent energy-saving projects around the house like air sealing in the basement and attic. Consider adding insulation in the attic if it is poorly insulated or in your basement if it is unfinished. While these bigger projects cost more initially, they will pay off with energy savings in the long run.
Looking for more ways to save? We are here to help! For more energy-saving ideas, visit our website at www.kwh.com and click on Your Home>Energy Saving Ideas. Cass County Electric Cooperative also offers a home energy review, which includes a walk-through assessment and analysis of your home. This energy review will help you make decisions to manage your energy costs and make wise energy improvements.
Call 701-356-4400 and ask for the energy management department for program details. (Energy review availability is limited to staffing and scheduling.)