While it’s the time of year for fun and celebration, one look at your energy bill come January is liable to lead to unnecessary frustration. The truth is, there are lots of simple steps you can take to keep a smile on your face and your energy costs under control.
LED lights: a new tradition
Lighting your Christmas tree, wreath, banister, or the outside of your home, may be a long family tradition but incandescent lights don’t have to be. Switching to energy-saving LEDs can drastically reduce energy usage and save you money as they only use a fraction of the energy when compared to incandescent bulbs.
Time out your lights
Another smart way to rein in your energy usage is to set a timer to shut off your holiday lights. A good rule of thumb: keep them on from dusk until 10pm. Any later and few people are around to see them.
If you can’t stand the heat…
Your kitchen is a great place for some choice cuts to your energy use this season. Here are a few tips:
- Use a small oven, toaster-oven or microwave to heat leftovers, rather than your big oven
- Only run your dishwasher when it’s full
- Opening and closing refrigerator and freezer doors often – or holding the door open too long – causes the unit to use more energy than necessary. Decide what you want before opening the door, and remove several items at once.
The weather outside is…
Delightful – if you’re bundled up well! So, turn out the lights, turn down the heat and go ice skating, stroll the neighbourhood and discover everyone’s lights and decorations, go sledding, tobogganing or build a snowman. Don’t forget to bring along a hot cup of cocoa!
Travelling over the holidays? Before leaving, unplug non-essential equipment or appliances – like your TV, microwave, and video games consoles – to avoid phantom energy waste.
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