07 November 2010

Be Green, Save Some

It’s chilly outside and warm inside.   Energy costs are rising and our incomes are falling. Oh, what shall we do? Higher crude oil prices leads to higher prices all over the consumer spectrum and we are headed for some serious pain with the expected colder winter this year.  It’s now time for preventative remedy before we get too comfortable in our cozy homes.  In our house, the heat stays off until our bones start to ache.  Just kidding, but we do let the indoor temperature drop in the late afternoon to about 62 degrees.  The kids go to bed early, so we do not worry about them being cold.  They have a hard time getting to sleep if they are too warm. At night, the heat stays off.  In the early morning, we warm the house to about 65 before we turn the heat off again.  Once the kids are up and running around, in shorts and t-shirts, they complain about the heat, never mind that their feet are cold as ice!  Whiny  voice, “I don’t wanna wear socks!”

It all started when we got married.  My husband likes it cold.  I did not, but then I realized the savings on the utility  bills.  I just threw on some sweats, socks and slippers and I was ready to go.  Over the years, we got used to ever chillier temperatures.  The kids were born into it.  You can do it too!  Over the next few weeks, allow your home temperature to drop about two degrees from your normal per week until you get to the low 60’s temperature.  No point shocking your system, unless you really want to. Add warmer clothes and an extra blanket if you must. 
Wash and rinse your clothes in cold water; take cooler and shorter showers; and after you bake something yummy, crack the oven door a bit to let the heat out to warm the home (warning: do not use your oven to heat the house!).  Be sure to drop the temperature of your hot water if you have not already.   In rarely inhabited rooms, cover the air vents and close the doors; use the heat for the occupied spaces.  A humidifier is a less costly solution to keep your noses moist.  Keep your window coverings closed and place towels at the base of the drafty doors. I do not advocate spending too much money to save some, especially when it comes to the $19.99 gadgets that are equal to stuff you already have at home.
Check out U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's/U.S. Department of Energy Home Advisor Web site www.energystar.gov/homeadvisor for tips to reduce your energy bills. 
Once winter sets in, we usually do not allow the temperature to get below 62 degrees.  We are saving money, but will not jeopardize our health or the structure of our home.  Being too cheap, can cost serious cash if your frozen pipes burst!
Reduction in use of energy resources is a green thing to do.  Let me know what you are doing to save our planet and your $$s!

Thanks: publicdomainpictures.net

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