Green Inside the House

1) Air Leaks

Check for places where air may be leaking out of your home, causing drafts. You can increase your energy efficiency as much as 30 percent simply by plugging air leaks.

2) Inadequate Insulation

Check in attics, around pipes and ductwork, and under the flooring on the ground floor if you have an unheated basement.

3) Hot Water Heaters

Insulate the pipes that carry hot water throughout your home. If your water heater is more than five years old, wrap it in an insulating jacket. And turn down the thermostat if it’s set higher than 120 degrees.

4) Cooking

Microwave ovens reduce energy use by about 2/3 compared with conventional ovens, because they cook foods faster. Crock pots and pressure cookers are also efficient. And don’t use a full-size oven to do the work of a toaster oven.

5) Light Bulbs

Perhaps the quickest and easiest way to begin saving energy at home is by replacing standard light bulbs with new compact fluorescent bulbs. They cost slightly more than regular light bulbs, but they save money over time because they last up to 13 times longer.

6) Appliances and Electronics

Run full loads when washing clothes. Wash in cold or warm water, not hot. Only run the dishwasher when there is a full load. Turn off your computer monitor when you won’t be using it for at least 20 minutes. Finally, look for that Energy Star label on many types of appliances.

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