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25 Green Tips for Energy Efficiency & Money Savings

1) Purchase outdoor lights with motion or heat sensors - so they only come on when you need them on.

2) Buy compact fluorescent or fluorescent light bulbs - they last 6 to 8 times longer AND save energy.

3) Buy a laptop - when plugged in, they use 50% of the energy used by a typical desktop PC.

4) Choose to paint your house a light color - they reflect up to 90% of sunlight and keep your house cooler.

5) Wash clothes in warm or cold water - hot water uses 80 to 85% more energy.

6) Clean refrigerator gaskets regularly and vacuum the condenser coils 2x per year - it'll operate more efficiently.

7) Find a reliable energy auditor through Home Advisor - they'll identify specific issues for your home to save you money on your electric bill.

8) Clean your air filters - by doing this once per month, your air conditioning unit will run at peak efficiency.

9) Install light dimmers in your home - dimming the lights by 25% can save the same percentage in energy.

10) Move your lamps with incandescent bulbs away from your thermostat - the heat coming from them registers with your thermostat, causing the air conditioner to run longer.

11) Reusing paper and plastic grocery or shopping bags can save you time and money. When we reuse one ton of each and you spare 17 trees and save eleven barrels of oil. (Avg. cost for 20 plastic trash bags is $5)

12) When running your dishwasher, run full loads and don't pres-rinse to save energy and water. You can save up to 20 gallons of water per load and 7,300 gallons per year.

13) Save 10 gallons of water for every 2 minutes you lop off your shower time.

14) Install or buy a water filter instead of buying bottled water. If you drink one liter of bottled water per day, you can save up to $330 per year by purchasing a $30 water filter.

15) Brush your teeth while you wait for the water to warm up for your shave and save 1,800 gallons of water per year.

16) Save up to 5% on your electricity bill by consistently cleaning your lint screen in your dryer.

17) Save 90% of the normal energy used by your washer, by using warm and cold cycles, instead of hot.

18) Close your shades, blinds, and/or drapes during extreme heat and cold weather and reduce your energy costs by 20%.

19) Download music instead of purchasing CDs at the store. Each month, 45 tons of unwanted CDs end up in landfills. Plus, the average album download price is $10, when they're $15 in the store.

20) Save money and energy by unplugging your TV when you aren't watching it. 10-15% of a TV's energy consumption is used when it's turned off.

21) Use a digital camera instead of one that needs film. And try to avoid using disposable cameras as many don't end up being recycled.

22) When traveling, save on energy costs by setting your thermostat to 55 degrees in cold months and 85 during the hot months. Also, unplug appropriate appliances and pause your newspaper delivery.

23) Use "auto switching" power strips and surge protectors. These devices shut down when your appliances are turned off.

24) An idling car omits 20 times the amount of air pollution than one going 32 miles per hour. Save money on gas by limiting the amount of time that your car idles.

25) If you own a pool, cover it when it's not being used and cut your water bill and the water that is lost to evaporation by 90%.

Some tips provided by:
It's Easy Being Green: A Handbook for Earth-Friendly Living by Crissy Trask. Utah: Gibbs Smith, 2006.
The Green Book by Elizabeth Rogers and Thomas M. Kostigen. New York: Three Rivers Publishing, 2007

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