Mothers Know Best

Do you remember how Mom would tell you to turn out the lights? Mom was thinking of saving energy dollars, not rolling blackouts and bankrupt utility companies. Rarely have Mom’s words of wisdom been as fitting as they are now. Electricity rates are going up everywhere, besides switching off lights there are several other painless methods to conserve energy and save money.

Save on your utility dollars by following a few simple tips:

Dishwasher: Run your dishwasher only when it’s full. Another cost saving measure would be to turn off the heat dry cycle (if you have this option) and open the door to air dry your load.

Refrigerators: Use more power than any other appliance in the home. Although rushing out to buy a new refrigerator may not be in your budget, it is important to know that new models are more efficient and use as little as half the electricity of older units.

Make sure the refrigerator door seals are tight. Test them by closing the door over a piece of paper or a dollar bill so it is half in and half out of the refrigerator. If you can pull the paper or bill out easily, the latch may need adjustment or the seal may need replacing.

Place food and liquids in airtight containers because uncovered foods release moisture and make the refrigerator compressor work harder.

Lighting: Turn off lights that are not being used and consider installing timers or photo cells on some lights to conserve energy and reduce costs. Another option, consider using occupancy sensors that would turn on and off automatically when someone enters or leaves a room.

Rather than brightly lighting an entire room, focus the light where you need it. For example, use fluorescent under-cabinet lighting for kitchen sinks and counter-tops.

Consider dimmer switches and three-way lamps, these provide low light levels when bright lights are unnecessary.

Every little change can save you money for that next vacation.

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