What can I do right now?
Turn off lights and appliances and shut off power sources.
Turning off lights and appliances when not in use is an easy way to save energy. The use of power strips can further reduce energy use by avoiding vampire plug loads that are caused by unused electronics.
Replace light bulbs.
Compact fluorescent lighting (CFL) and LED (light-emitting diodes) lightbulbs reduce energy costs while providing the same level of illumination as incandescents. Most CFL and LED lights are dimmable to give even greater control of lighting.
Every opening in a building (doors, windows, pipes and electrical boxes) is a potential pathway for conditioned air to escape. Caulking, sealants, spray foam and weather-stripping eliminate air leaks and help to regulate the temperature differential between indoors and outdoors.
Optimize heat and light from the sun.
Natural daylight is free, healthy and abundant. Controlling for glare, windows and skylights can provide adequate light for many activities. Adding a light shelf to windows uses the sun to natually light the house, while preventing heat from entering. Open curtains, shades and blinds on south and west facing windows for heat and light, or close them to keep cooler.
Take advantage of passive design features for cooling.
Plant shade trees, install window shades and adjust them to control the sun, and open and close windows to take advantage of the natural flow of air. Your building will be more comfortable, and you will save money on electricity.
Buy ENERGY STAR appliances.
Be Water Smart.
By reducing your indoor and outdoor water usage, you can save both water and money.