Some of the best energy saving tactics are the ones that don’t require any sacrifice, like turning off the lights when you leave the room. But lighting doesn’t account for up to 48 percent of home energy consumption — heating and cooling does, according to the Department of Energy. So if you’re looking for a place to make painless cuts, start at your thermostat. And if you’re willing to throw on a sweater or turn on a fan once in a while, you could save even more. Most thermostats have 3 settings: auto, circulate & on… all the time.
Programming Isn’t Proven
Programmable thermostats claim savings on your energy bill. But they can’t prove it. They make you punch in every temperature change you want throughout the day, and usually you can only program 2 or 3 changes. It’s annoying and complicated – most people don’t even bother. So despite their claims, most programmed thermostats stay at the same temperature all day. And that wastes energy. Programming just doesn’t work.
Avoiding Last-Minute Changes
Every time your HVAC system comes on or shuts off, it causes a little more wear. To extend your unit’s life, you should try not to make a lot of temperature changes. Whether you set most air conditioners or furnaces to 65 or 75 degrees, they work at the same speed. Setting your system at a temperature that’s too low or high will just keep it on longer and make some family members uncomfortable. You’ll waste energy, and you’ll have to shut it off or reset it when you start feeling too cold or too hot.
Instead, make smaller changes and avoid adjusting your thermostat when possible. You can stay comfortable in winter weather with extra blankets and fuzzy bathrobes, and you can make your indoor air feel cooler with a dehumidifier in summer.
Energy Efficient Ways to Stay Comfortable through Seasons
Even if you don’t love the idea of setting the thermostat a little higher this summer and lower next winter, there are lots of energy efficient ways to stay comfortable.
How to stay cool in summer:
- Wear lightweight clothing and breathable fabrics, like cotton.
- Take cool showers at night before bed.
- Avoid using the oven; try the microwave, toaster oven or grill instead.
- Invest in Geothermal
How to stay warm in winter:
- Dress warmly in sweaters, slippers and even winter hats indoors.
- Sip warm drinks like tea and coffee.
- Use an electric blanket to relax comfortably even in a chilly house.
- Invest in Geothermal