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Save Energy for the Holidays

Posted on | December 16, 2008 | No Comments

Looking to spend less this holiday season? Don’t forget to include energy bills in that equation. A few helpful energy-saving tips make all the difference. During the holidays, we spend an enormous amount of energy decorating our homes, yards, and hosting family gatherings. Environmentally friendly groups want people to save some green this year by going green with their energy sources.

The number one thing that saps energy is the lights. We hang lights on our Christmas trees, in our living spaces, on the trees outside, and on our homes. The lights by themselves don’t give off much energy, but add several strings of lights and keep them on all evening, and you’ll have a problem. 

Instead of purchasing the usual lights for decoration, think about using LED lights. LED stands for light emitting diode. These lights are controlled by computer chip technology. They do not emit any heat. This keeps the lights from being a fire hazard should they rest on a dried tree branch or a piece of paper.

LED lights also don’t use much energy. But, these are not the only lights that could be replaced. Think about the lights in your fixtures. Are they the regular tungsten filament light bulbs? These light bulbs use more energy and don’t last very long. 

CFL bulbs are the talk of the town right now. They provide brighter light and use fewer kilowatts to do it. CFL stands for compact fluorescent light. You may have seen those coiled bulbs in the store. They are made to fit any light fixture. Replacing your regular bulbs with these ensures brighter lighting for the holiday parties.

Keeping the thermostat at a constant temperature saps less energy in the long run. Depending on what we are doing, we turn it up or down. This is a mistake because every change means more energy to meet the new temperature request. 

If you live in a warm climate, try room darkening shades or using heavy curtains. This blocks the sun’s rays from getting trapped in your home and overheating the place. Use the sun during the day by installing solar power in your home. Also, installing ceiling fans helps to circulate the air in the room and save you money. Control the temperature by turning the fans on and off instead of tweaking the thermostat.

Using the oven can also heat up a home considerably. Cooking during the evening when it is cooler avoids the uncomfortable sticky feeling that comes with cooking on a hot day. During the day, warm meals using the microwave. This keeps the temperature in the home from rising.

To see where you are losing heat from your home, have the power company come out and perform a free energy check. They will inspect the home and let you know how energy efficient it really is. Start by going green this holiday then make it a goal next year to stay green!

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