Green Your House - Reduce Energy Usage

Reduce Energy Usage By:
  • Upgrading to a Programmable Thermostat – If you don’t have one already, you can swap out your heating system's existing non-programmable thermostat for a programmable one. Bay Village residents can obtain one from Columbia Gas of Ohio at a deeply discounted cost. Programmable thermostats allow you to automatically turn down your heat when you are away from home. This can significantly reduce your gas bill and reduce air pollution. Visithttp://www.energyfederation.org/columbiagasohio/default.php for prices and installation instructions.
  • Lowering the Temperature of Your Hot Water Heater – Lower your gas or electric utility bills. Overheating water wastes energy and pollutes the air. Set your cylinder thermostat to 60°C or 140°F. It can always be raised back up if your hot water runs out too quickly. Experiment to find the most energy efficient setting for your household.
  • Replacing Incandescent lights with Compact Florescent Light bulbs (CFLs) - Twenty percent of the average American household’s energy bill is for lighting. That’s why replacing energy hungry incandescent lights with energy efficient compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs) makes sense for both your wallet and the environment. Although the initial upfront financial cost for the compact florescent light bulb (CFL) is slightly more, over the bulb’s lifespan, its total financial cost to the consumer is significantly less than incandescent (where total financial cost = its purchase price + cost of energy consumed). That’s because CFLs last up to 10 times longer and use up to 75% less electricity than the traditional incandescent light bulb.

How to get light most similar to incandescent: When purchasing CFLs, check the bulb's kelvin (K) rating listed on the package or bulb base. Bulbs with a lower K rating (2,700 - 3,000K) offer a soft, warm light similar to an incandescent and are suitable for living rooms, bedrooms, etc. These bulbs may be identified as “soft white.” Incandescent lights typically have a rating of 2,700K.

  • If You Qualify, Taking Advantage of Free Energy Efficiency Upgrades for Low Income Families – The Home Weatherization Assistance Program (HWAP) is a no-cost energy assistance program designed to increase the energy efficiency of dwellings owned or occupied by income-eligible Ohioans, reduce participants’ household energy expenditures, and improve participants’ health and safety. See http://development.ohio.gov/Community/ocs/hwap.htm  for details.
  • Low Interest Loans for Home Weatherization and Energy Efficient Upgrades - ECO-Link is a partnership between the Ohio Treasurer of State and participating state banks to provide reduced-interest rate financing to Ohio homeowners for weatherization projects and energy efficient appliances in their homes. Participants receive a 3% interest rate reduction on bank loans for five years. See http://tos.ohio.gov/ForYou/Default.aspx?Section=ECO  for program details.

  • Having a Home Energy Audit - Discounted home energy audits are offered through Columbia Gas.  Seehttp://www.columbiagasohio.com/en/your-home/YourEnergySolutions/home-performance-solutions.aspx for more details.

  • Buying Energy Star Rated Items for your home when purchasing new electronics or appliances.  A useful consumer's list of most energy efficient electronics and appliances can be found in the products section of the site.  Also build and/or renovate your home or business using the Energy Star standard instead of the minimum code requirement.  The upgrades generally pay for themselves in a short period of time.  Visit the Energy Star website for details.    http://www.energystar.gov/  Additionally, check out their cool interactive tool to discover where you can save energy in your home: http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=popuptool.atHome