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Energy saving tips

Spring/Summer Energy Savings

Stay comfortable, shift and reduce your energy use this spring and summer with these simple tips from Duke Energy.

No-sweat advice for cooling your home

  • A dirty filter makes your cooling system work harder and uses more energy. Replace your filter every few months or opt for a washable one – they can last up to five years. Don't forget: changing your filters can cut down on dust around the house.
  • During peak cooling hours, solar heat gain can account for one-third of the load on your air conditioner. Close the drapes on the sunny side of your home while you are there, or close all window coverings if you are leaving for the day.
  • Turn air conditioners to the highest comfortable setting. We recommend 76 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit when you're home and 80 degrees while you are away. Adjusting your thermostat up a few degrees will have a significant impact on your cooling bill. A change from 73 degrees to 76 degrees for 24 hours a day could save you approximately 30 percent on your summer cooling costs

Cooking up a deal

  • Try to do most of your cooking in the microwave or on top of the range instead of in the oven during on-peak times to save energy and money. Microwave ovens use up to 70 percent less energy than a conventional oven.
  • You can lower your oven temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit when baking with glass or ceramic dishes.
  • The "on" fan setting on your central air conditioner can circulate air continuously through your home. This will usually even out the hot spots in your home, and if this practice allows you to set your thermostat at a higher summer temperature, it can also save you money.
  • The ceiling fans in your home are a great way to help you stay cool in the summer. Simply set the fans to operate in a counter-clockwise direction. Use kitchen, bath, and other ventilating fans wisely. In just one hour, these fans can pull out a houseful of cooled air.

More power to you

  • Some newer TVs are automatically configured for "store" mode, which is a brighter, high-energy mode set by manufacturers prior to shipping. Try out the "home" setting for a better picture, longer TV life and energy savings of up to 30 percent.
  • "Energy vampires" loom in and around your home. Devices like your cell phone charger, gaming system and power strips use energy – unplug them when you're not using them. Also change the way you use other equipment-- if you don't think you'll use your computer for a while, shut it down and only turn on your printer when needed.
  • You can save money on your energy bill by letting Duke Energy haul that old spare refrigerator or freezer away for FREE, and, you receive a $30 check from Duke Energy. Check out Duke Energy's Appliance Recycling program

Keep your head above water

  • Remember to wash your clothes only during the off-peak times you have chosen or during weekends when it is always off-peak.
  • As much as 80 percent of the energy your dishwasher uses goes to heat water. So, try turning off the "pre-rinse" option and instead rinse your dishes before loading them in the dishwasher. Also, run the dishwasher when it's full and during off-peak times.
  • Remember the on-peak times you have selected and refrain from taking a shower during that time frame if possible. Install a low-flow shower head. These shower heads typically use 15 gallons of water during a 10 minute shower compared to a bath that can use up to 25 gallons of water.
  • Duke Energy's Smart $aver® Program offers you ways to save money, improve the comfort of your home and become more energy efficient. Incentives include up to $625 on a new heat pump or central air conditioner, a heat pump or central air tune-up worth a $50 incentive, and insulation and seal incentives worth $75-$250.
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