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Energy Savings Tips – 2021 Spring Edition

With the warmer weather on the horizon, Spring is the perfect time to incorporate energy saving tips into your life. Some of the tips below are free. Others are simple and inexpensive actions you can take to ensure maximum savings through the Spring and Summer months.

Lighting Tips

One of the easiest ways to reduce your energy costs is to replace standard incandescent light bulbs with LEDs. They last up to 10 times longer than traditional bulbs and provide the same light output and use up to 75 percent less electricity.

Here are some simple lighting tips for you and your family to follow this Spring:

  • Keep your curtains or shades open to use daylight instead of turning on lights. For more privacy, use light-colored, loose-weave curtains to allow daylight into the room. Also, decorate with lighter colors that reflect sunlight.
  • Turn off lights when they are not needed (when you are not at home, when no one is using a particular room, or when you already have enough light).
  • Use timers or dimmers. Timers save electricity by turning lights off when not in use. Dimmers save electricity when used to lower light levels. Be sure to select products that are compatible with the energy-efficient bulbs you want to use.
  • Spend more time outdoors as the days get “longer” and the weather gets warmer. Go for an evening stroll, visit your closest park, or go for a bike ride. Staying active and being outdoors will improve your overall health and your wallet as your home’s energy savings add up.

Learn more about energy efficient lights

Did you know?

LEDs offer many benefits including: Lower energy costs, a longer life and cooler operation. Lights not on will save power and power not used is the highest saving.

A/C Tune Up

Consider turning your air conditioner on for a test run so if there are any malfunctions you can quickly address them. You should also consider having a contractor perform a system tune up to ensure your unit is running at peak efficiency. Annual maintenance in the Springtime can help prepare your unit for optimal performance and avoid unexpected breakdowns during those first hot summer days.

Lower Energy Costs with Home Performance

An energy audit can identify many ways to save energy in your home. BPI – Energy Star with Home contractors can perform an audit of your home and recommend actions that will lower your energy costs year after year. Low-interest financing and rebates are available through the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program.

Did you know?
High utility bills in the Summer can often be traced to air leaks in your home’s envelope, inefficient and incorrectly installed heating and cooling equipment, or poorly sealed and insulated ducts. An energy audit will pinpoint these items.

Set-top Boxes, Cable Boxes, TV-Tuner to receive & decode device.

Most cable boxes are given to consumers as part of their contract with a service provider, rather than sold independently at retail stores. So, when you are deciding on a cable or satellite service, be sure to ask the service provider for an ENERGY STAR qualified set-top box.

If you currently have cable or satellite service, check with your service provider to find out what, if any, upgrade options are available.

Did you know?

ENERGY STAR qualified set-top boxes are on average 45 percent more efficient than conventional models.

Make it a Full Load!

The average washing machine uses 40.9 gallons of water per load. If you buy a new washer, shop for a high-efficiency washer that needs less than 28 gallons of water per load. To achieve even greater savings, wash only full loads of laundry or be sure to choose the appropriate load size on the washing machine.

Refrigerator or Freezer

It’s time for Spring cleaning! Do you have a second refrigerator or freezer in the garage or basement? Or, are you buying a new one and need to get rid of the old one? Consider this… pre 1991 models can use 3 times more energy. Dirty coils can use 2X more power and shorten the refrigerator’s life. Coils need a lot of air to perform at capacity.

Is Phantom Energy Haunting Your House?

Many of the electronic devices in your home stay on, even when they are “off”. Chargers for cell phones, power tools and other gadgets draw energy even when they are not in use. Appliances like televisions, computer monitors, and DVD players can also draw power. Although it is not insignificant, “phantom energy” use accounts for 5-15 percent of a home’s electricity use. Balance your load and use high voltage where it makes sense. If lights are on use different side of box to balance load.

The Answer

Unplugging these devices is the simplest way to solve the problem. We recommend using power strips and hooking multiple items into them, so you can flick one switch and turn everything off at once.

Mind Your Thermostat

Widely available for about $50 programmable thermostats can help you shave almost $200 a year off your energy bills by adjusting the temperature at certain times of the day or night. Many homeowners have programmable thermostats but don’t take the time to actually program them. Today’s thermostats offer up to four pre-programmed settings to regulate your home’s temperature year-round.

Did you know?

You can find out your savings with ENERGY STAR’s programmable thermostat tool. Visit:  http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=thermostats.progThermostat
Give it a try and keep in mind that setting temperatures up or down when you are away or asleep is an easy way to save energy and money without sacrificing comfort.

Clockwise or Counter-Clockwise?

Do you operate your ceiling fan clockwise or counter-clockwise? There is often confusion on which way to run your fans. In the Summer, use the ceiling fan in the counter-clockwise direction. While standing directly under the ceiling fan you should feel a cool breeze. Remember, ceiling fans are designed to cool only people, not the room. It is advisable to turn off the fan when you leave the room.

Did you know?

Even at high speed, a ceiling fan typically uses less energy than a 100 watt light bulb and less than a 25 watt bulb at low speed. And some fans use LED bulbs for even greater savings. LEDs use 20% less power than heat making incandescent bulbs.

Saving Energy at Work Too

Sometimes the biggest challenge to improving energy efficiency is knowing where to start and how to get through the process. Eric Kjelshus Energy Heating and Cooling has performed energy saving audits for 50 years and know the financial incentives for businesses to help lower energy costs. Energy Audits are available with incentives paying for up to 30% of the upgrades.

The Bottom Line:

Energy can be a significant component of your company’s operating expenses. Wasteful or inefficient operation can directly impact the bottom line.

Money Saving Energy Resources

Show Me Green Sales Tax Holiday

Section 144.526.1 creates the “Show Me Green Sales Tax Holiday.” Beginning in 2009, during a seven day period starting on April 19th and ending April 25th, sales of qualifying Energy Star certified new appliances will be exempt from state sales tax. Local jurisdictions can choose to participate in the Show Me Green Sales Tax Holiday.

Form MO-HEA – 2018 Home Energy Audit Expense Deduction

Any taxpayer who paid an individual certified by the Division of Energy to complete a home energy audit may deduct 100 percent of the costs incurred for the audit and the implementation of any energy efficiency recommendations made by the auditor. The subtraction may not exceed $1,000, for a single taxpayer or $2,000 for taxpayers filing combined returns. To qualify for the subtraction, you must have incurred expenses in the taxable year you are filing a claim.

Download the form here:  https://dor.mo.gov/forms/MO-HEA_2020.pdf

If you would like more information about Eric Kjelshus Energy or our energy auditing services, please complete our online contact form or call us a (816) 537-5100.

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