Do you know where your energy dollars are being spent?
Being aware of the costs, and making a few changes can add up and save a lot of money in the long run.
Clark Public Utilities provides free Energy Calculators on their website. Provide details about your home and energy usage, and they will give you tips on how to keep more of your hard-earned dollars. Calculators include:
- Home Energy Calculator
- Appliance calculator
- Lighting calculator
- Heating comparison
- Programmable thermostat
Here are a few things you can do to lower your costs (sample savings are for a 2-story, 2,000 square foot home with a gas water heater, gas furnace, and electric air conditioning):
- Replacing an aging gas water heater with a high-efficiency electric model can save $175 per year.
- If you caulk around your windows and doors, make certain the weatherstripping on your doors and windows is tight, weatherstrip your attic door, and take other actions to seal your house further, you could save up to $11 per year.
- If you have your house professionally weatherized, you could save up to $97 a year.
- Save by programming your thermostat differently. If you raise your cooling setting from 72°F to 78°F, you could save as much as $81 per year, and if you lower your heating setting from 70°F to 68°F, you could save as much as $48 per year. Using the Programmable Thermostat calculator, you can see your savings by adjusting times and temperatures (see screenshot).
- Replacing incandescent light bulbs with LEDs can save about $50 per year (not to mention the cost and hassle of constantly replacing bulbs).
- Turn off (or unplug) items when they're not in use. For example, a computer that is left on 24 hours a day can cost $210 per year. But if you only power it up to use it for 2 hours per day, it only costs $19 per year!
- Consider using ceiling fans to cool you during the summer months. They are one of the best investments for energy savings. Running one fan six hours a day for a month only adds about $.90 to your monthly utility bill. A single-room air conditioner, on the other hand, consumes 1,000 or more watts per day, and a whole-house air conditioner uses up to 5,000 watts daily!
Clark Public Utilities (and other utility companies) offer rebates and reduced-rate loan programs to help with upgrading your home's energy efficiency.