Current Connections – April 2012
Here are a few easy, low or no-cost ways to save energy and money while cleaning your house this spring:
1. Clean your furnace filters
Clean filters monthly during the heating season and replace as needed. Forced-air filters trap
dirt and dust, clean the air you breathe and help the furnace operate more safely and efficiently.
2. Seal leaks
Seal any leaks around windows, doors, and incoming pipes and wiring. For small cracks, use caulking;
for larger openings, use a can of expanding spray foam. Add weatherstripping and door sweeps to doors,
and replace weatherstripping as it wears out. Install foam gaskets behind covers for electrical
outlets and light switches.
3. Dust off light bulbs
Dirty or greasy light bulbs can reduce light output by as much as 10%. Dust bulbs regularly to
avoid the tendency of switching to a higher wattage bulb or turning on more lights, which will
use more energy. Make sure lamps are cool before touching them.
4. Dust electronics and then unplug them when not in use
Turn off power to computers, TVs and all electronic devices when not in use to avoid wasting
standby power, which can account for as much as 10% of home energy use.
5. Clean your refrigerator coils
Unplug your refrigerator and vacuum the coils under or behind the unit. This allows the
compressor to run less often and for shorter periods of time, reducing your energy use.
6. Clean sliding glass door track
If you have a sliding glass door, make sure to keep its track clean. A dirty track can ruin the
door's seal and create gaps where heat or cold air can escape.
7. Clean your dryer's lint screen
Simply cleaning your dryer's lint screen after every load can improve the dryer's performance,
reduce the risk of fire and reduce your energy costs. When the weather gets sunnier, consider
drying your clothes outside for even greater savings.
See additional energy saving tips