Tip of the Week
If you’re looking to save money on utility bills and reduce your carbon footprint, making your home part of the “green” initiative, here are some tips to help you protect both the environment and your bottom line.
* Dusty coils can affect the refrigerator’s overall efficiency by trapping heat and preventing the refrigerator from cooling efficiently. The grills and coils should be cleaned once or twice a year, using a vacuum cleaner with an attachment to clean the condenser cover and vents.
* Insulate your home. Heating and cooling your home is one of your biggest energy costs, and if your home isn’t properly insulated, you’re losing money. Start by closing your windows and sealing any drafty areas you find. Hire a professional to insulate drafty areas of your home if you don’t feel you can handle them on your own.
* Plug home electronics, such as TVs and DVD players, into power strips. Turn the power strips off when the equipment is not in use as equipment still uses several watts of power when they are in standby mode.
* A quick tip when it comes to laundry is to wash clothes with cold water whenever possible. Look for washers equipped with “cold wash” technology, which achieves cold water savings with warm water washing performance. If you must wash a partial load, reduce the level of water to avoid waste of extra water.
Houses 10 or more years old are often lacking in insulation. While adding insulation to existing walls can be difficult, increasing R-value in the attic — usually by having additional insulation blown in — is a simple, low-cost improvement and often results in a return on investment of 100 percent or more.
Did You Know
A popular feature offered on some new refrigerator is the “door-within-a-door,” which can reduce cold air loss by up to 47 percent. This compartment on the fridge door allows quick access to commonly used snacks and beverages without requiring you to open the entire refrigerator door.
Dress up a drab fridge
A trend that is starting to catch on is to use contact paper or removable wallpaper to cover an outdate or tired-looking refrigerator. Patterns and prints can often complement the overall look of a kitchen in a nicer way than a traditional boxy, white refrigerator.
Parking-lot herb drying
Hot summer temperatures and unshaded parking lots can turn a car’s interior into an ideal drying oven. Spread a sheet of newspaper on the seat of your car, spread fresh herbs into a single layer, then leave them for several hours with the windows rolled up and the doors shut. The herbs will dry perfectly, plus leave your car smelling fantastic.
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Tip of the Week