The tree is down, the lights taken off the house, and those new year’s resolutions….well, if you’re anything like me, the year started with good intentions but somehow honoring my resolutions hasn’t kicked in yet. But it’s not too late!
One easy resolution that I’m taking action on this week – getting more energy efficient. The first step I took was installing my new Nest – the learning thermostat. Did you know that heating and cooling costs typically make up 50% of your energy bill? This made me take action. I wanted a thermostat that would work for me – learn my schedule and program itself! The EPA says a properly programmed thermostat can cut 20% off your heating and cooling bill. Now that Nest will learn my schedule, rather than me remembering to turn the thermostat up and down, I’m looking forward to that 20% savings. Not only is it helping the environment, but that’s money that stays in my wallet.
Today’s agenda – switching to more energy efficient light bulbs. There are two main types of energy efficient bulbs – CFLs (compact fluorescent) and LED (light emitting diode). Although I like LED’s better, well, I just can’t afford them. So, I’m going with CFLs. Energy Star rated CFLs not only save money, but typically pay for themselves in just 6 months. Here are some of the benefits of CFLs:
Changing just one bulb will save $40 or more over the lifetime of the bulb. Changing 5 bulbs can save you $200 or more over the lifetime of the bulbs. The typical household has at least 30 lightbulbs – that’s more than $1200 in savings! Efficiency Maine’s Residential Lighting Program worked with manufacturers and lighting retailers to reduce the prices of energy-efficient lighting products – even more savings for us! Some of the retailers in the Lewiston/Auburn area offering discounted CFLs include: Lowe’s, The Home Depot, Aubuchon Hardware, TruValue Hardware, Ace Hardware, Hannaford Brothers, BJ’s Wholesale Club and Wal-mart.
To learn more about CFLs and to calculate your savings, visit the Energy Star website. I’m off to the store to pick up some bulbs…..