The largest single energy user in California homes is the central air conditioning and heating system. If this system is not installed properly, it not only wastes energy, but money as well.
- Open blinds during the winter to let the sun in.
- Seal drafty doors and windows to minimize heat loss from your home.
- Set your thermostat comfortably low in the winter. Install a programmable thermostat that is compatible with your heating system.
- Keep blinds closed during the summer to block the sun.
- Use fans or ceiling fans instead of the central air conditioning unit when you plan to stay in one room for an extended period of time. Individual fans cost about 90 percent less to operate than central cooling systems.
- Seal drafty doors and windows to minimize cold air loss from your home.
- Set your thermostat comfortably high in the summer. Install a programmable thermostat that’s compatible with your cooling system.
- Change your air filter regularly. An air conditioning unit with dirty filters can use 5 to 10 percent more energy than necessary.
- Tuning up your HVAC equipment yearly can improve comfort and efficiency.
Seal Your Heating and Cooling Ducts:
- Ducts that move air to-and-from a forced air furnace or central air conditioner, are often big energy wasters. Sealing and insulating ducts can improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by as much as 20 percent — and sometimes more.
Appliances, Computers and Electronics:
- Turn off your computer and monitor when not in use.
- Appliances and electronics use energy if they are plugged in even when they are off. Try unplugging appliances like toasters, coffee pots and cell phone chargers when they are not in use.
- Put your computer, printer, TVs and DVD players on a power strip so you can turn off the power strip when they are not in use.
- Wash and dry only full loads of laundry, and when possible, hang dry clothes.
- Switch to Light Emitting Diode (LED) bulbs.
- LEDs can last more than 25 times longer than traditional light bulbs.
- LEDs use 75 percent less energy.
- LEDs produce more light per watt.
- LEDs contain no mercury.
- Turn off lights when you are not in a room.
- Open the blinds and use the light from the sun when possible.
- Upgrade to a new ENERGY STAR® model.
- If you have a refrigerator or freezer in the garage that is not full, consider getting rid of it. These appliances tend to be older and therefore less energy efficient, causing them to run continuously in very hot environments.
- Make sure you have your water heater wrapped in a water heater blanket.
- Lower the thermostat on your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.