To do today
- Turn the temperature on your water heater to the warm setting (120º).
- Use the energy-saving settings on your refrigerator, dishwasher, washer, and dryer.
- Check the age and condition of your major appliances. Refrigerators are often a big energy culprit.
- Clean or replace filters on your furnace, air conditioner, and heat pump.
To do this week
- If you have a water heater that is insulated with fiberglass, wrap a water heater blanket around it.
- Caulk leaky windows.
- Assess heating and cooling systems. Determine if replacements are justified, or whether you should retrofit them to make them work more efficiently.
To do this month
- Inspect attic or crawl space for insulation. Is there any? How much?
- Insulate hot water pipes and ductwork wherever they run through unheated areas.
- Seal the biggest leaks in the house. You know the ones; they whistle or feel drafty on windy days.
- Check the holes that were cut for plumbing pipes. There often are gaps between the plumbing and where the wall was for the plumbing. Use a can of spray foam, available at any hardware store, to seal these leaks.
- Seal any leaks you find around chimneys, recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and unfinished spaces.
- Install a programmable thermostat to save on heating or cooling your home – while you’re away at work during the day, for example. If you don’t install a programmable thermostat, adjust your thermostat when you leave home.
- Request a free energy efficiency consultation.
To do this year
- Insulate your home. If your walls aren’t insulated, ask an insulation contractor to blow cellulose into the walls. If your house is due for new siding, find out whether house wrap, blown-in insulation, or even rolled insulation is best for your home.
- Insulate your attic. Find out what the best R-value is for attics, then get it and install it. The attic is your home’s biggest – and most pricey – air leak.
- Replace aging and inefficient appliances. Even if you think the appliance has a few good years left, replacing it with an energy-efficient one is a pretty good investment. To get a better idea about energy-efficient appliances, check our Energy Usage Guide.
- Upgrade or replace leaky windows. If you want a few more years out of your existing windows, put weather stripping around them and get or replace storm windows. Better yet, if your budget can handle it, get new windows. Window manufacturers are doing a great job of making windows designed for our climate, in which we frequently have 30º to 40º temperature swings in one day.
- Plant shade trees and shrubs around your house, especially on the west side, to reduce your air conditioning costs.
Many of these suggestions were adapted from the ninth edition of the Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings by Jennifer Thorne Amann, Alex Wilson, and Katie Ackerly.
Energy Usage Guide
My Power gives CORE members with Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) meters the ability to better view, manage and analyze their usage data; monitor consumption patterns; compare periods of energy use, and better understand how their energy habits can affect their monthly bill.
My Power’s easy-to-understand charts, tables, and graphs give members a new way to look at how they use electricity. With My Power, they can view their energy usage data in hourly, daily, and weekly increments.
Members can also set up custom thresholds for energy use. My Power will notify them if their usage has exceeded their specified amount. They can also identify their daily peak demand, which can be helpful for those using rooftop solar generation.
My Power also includes weather data. Members can use My Power’s weather tracking feature to determine if a period of high energy use occurred on a day of high or low temperatures.
To access My Power, eligible CORE members first need to enroll in My Account. On the next screen, click the link for new account registration and follow the instructions. Once you are enrolled and logged in to My Account, My Power is accessible through the Additional Consumption Information for AMI Customers option.
Free energy efficiency consultations
CORE provides free energy efficiency consultations to members interested in lowering their usage. Our Energy Efficiency Specialist will use the data from the Energy Efficiency Consultation Request form, along with energy usage patterns displayed in My Power, to suggest opportunities for energy efficiency savings.
The process is simple: