How you heat and cool your home and the types and ages of your appliances can affect how much you pay for gas. Please review the information below for helpful hints on gas usage.
- Set your thermostat at the lowest possible temperature that is comfortable for you and your family. You can save as much as 10% on your energy bill by setting your thermostat back 10 degrees.
- Replace your furnace filter at the beginning of the heating season and check monthly and clean if necessary during the heating season.
- Keep all heating outlets and return-air grills free from all obstructions.
- Keep heat sources such as lamps away from the thermostat.
- The "auto" fan setting on central heating system thermostats can offer more economic heating than the "on" setting.
- Keep all windows and doors near your thermostat tightly closed.
- Keep draperies and shades open on sunny days and draperies and shades closed on cloudy and/or very cold windy days.
- If you have a heat pump, keep the outdoor unit clear of grass, leaves and other debris around the outdoor coil.
- Your natural gas furnace should have a clear, steady blue flame. Small amounts of yellow and orange are normal and may occur occasionally. Be sure to schedule a service call with a qualified professional if your appliance is not operating in this manner.
- Seal seams and joints in ductwork with duct tape and insulate them with vinyl-backed fiberglass insulations.
- Caulk and weather-strip cracks in walls and floors, windows and walls to save energy & money.
- Keep your fireplace damper closed tightly when not in use. Consider installing doors over the fireplace opening to cut down on drafts and heat loss up your fireplace chimney.
- Verify proper insulation levels in walls and ceilings. Proper levels will significantly reduce loss in your home and reduce your energy bills.
- Turn air conditioners to the highest comfortable setting. We recommend 78 degrees when you're home and 80 degrees when you're away. As a rule, raising the thermostat 2 degrees will reduce cooling costs by 5%.
- Clean or replace your air conditioning filter monthly, or as needed.
- Keep coils on the exterior air conditioning unit free of dirt, grass clippings and leaves.
- Use the "auto" fan setting on central air conditioner thermostats that offer more economical air conditioning and better humidity control than the "on" setting.
- Keep all air vents open; closed vents may alter the amount of air moved and disturb the balance and operation of the system.
- Use ceiling and/or oscillating fans to circulate the air.
- Close drapes and blinds during the heat of the day.
- Use heat-producing appliances such as your dryer, dishwasher, and range during the cooler nighttime hours.
- Consider using a microwave instead of the oven. Microwave ovens use up to 70% less energy than a conventional oven.
- Turn off unnecessary lights and use energy-efficient fluorescent light bulbs that use less energy and give off less heat.
- Use kitchen, bath and other ventilating fans wisely; in just one hour, these fans can pullout a houseful of cooled air.
- Seal air leaks with caulking and weather stripping and minimize door traffic to keep the cool air inside.
- When using air conditioning, keep your windows and doors closed throughout the day and night.
- Your attic insulation should be at least R-38 or about 12 inches thick.
- Have your dryer properly vented to the outside and the vent pipe cleaned to prevent moisture and heat buildup in the laundry room.
- Your attic should be properly vented to keep it as cool as possible. Check your soffit vents in the roof overhang to make sure they are not clogged with dirt.
- Have your air conditioning system checked annually by a qualified heating and cooling contractor to make sure they are not clogged with dirt.
- When using a dehumidifier in a damp basement or crawlspace, keep all windows and doors closed in the area.
- Turn hot water heater to 120 degrees to save energy.
- Do not let the hot water run when you wash dishes or shave.
- Low flow showerheads can reduce your hot water energy usage by up to 1/3.
- Take short showers.
- Wrapping insulation around your water heater and water pipes is a key conservation measure that can help you save energy and money.
- Repair leaky faucets promptly. A faucet that leaks a single drop of hot water each second can waste 200 gallons of hot water per month, as well as the energy used to heat it.
- Clean the lint filter after every laundry load.
- Wait for full laundry loads rather than washing multiple smaller loads. You'll save water, detergent and energy.
- Don't add wet items to a near – dry load.
- Make sure the dryer is properly vented.
- Use the "air dry" or "overnight dry" setting if your machine has one.
- Don't install your dishwasher near your refrigerator / freezer.
- In the summer, use the dishwasher in the cooler parts of the day such as the early morning and late evening hours.
- Put your pots on the correct sized burners. Energy is lost up the sides of small pots placed on large burners and adds unnecessary heat to the kitchen.
- Cover pans when cooking to reduce the amount of heat needed.
- Keep range-top burner and reflectors clean; they will reflect the heat better.
- Don't keep your refrigerator or freezer too cold.
- Place your refrigerator and freezer away from heat sources.
- Keep refrigerator motor and coils clean and unobstructed.
- A full freezer will perform better than a nearly empty freezer.
- Make sure refrigerator and freezer doors close tightly.