“PHANTOM” APPLIANCES DRAIN ENERGY WHILE NOT IN USE
Be watchful of the “phantom” appliances in your home that drain energy while not in use and cost you money needlessly. Lower your energy costs by looking out for appliances in your home that suck energy even when not in use or are not star rated energy efficient appliances.
Surprisingly, the average home spends an estimated $925. each year due to devices and appliances that are on “standby” or just not turned off in-between uses.
To protect yourself from these unnecessary energy costs, identify your appliances or devices that have a light on when not in use, or are left on continuously. Typical energy drains are space heaters, air conditioners, dehumidifiers, digital clocks, computer cameras, cell phone chargers and other small devices. Next, check out your small and mid-sized appliances including microwaves, coffee makers, stereos and other appliances that have an “off” light.
They are not really OFF.
These devices and appliances may seem harmless but actually create a larger than necessary power load draw from your utility which costs you money. Use of power strips that have an on and off switch can be a great investment to control unnecessary electrical use.
Another big step to saving electricity cost is to upgrade to star rated large appliances, such as your refrigerator, air conditioner, washing machine, dryer, water heater and so forth. Star rated appliances can save you a lot of money right away with their updated technology and greater energy efficiency than the older appliances in your home. Most appliances indicate their star rating with a tag or sticker. The more stars the appliance has, the more the savings on energy costs. The appliances having the least amount of energy consumption have the highest number of stars, and the star rating follows a descending order as the energy consumption of an appliance goes up. While this program is mandatory for some appliances, it is optional for others.
Most major utilities such as Xcel Energy, CenterPoint Energy, Greater MN Gas, MN Energy Resources, MN Valley, New Prague Utilities and Connexus have rebates and coupons for their customers to use when purchasing new star rated energy efficient appliances which can be viewed on your utility’s website. You can call your utility directly to learn more.
You may also schedule a HOME ENERGY AUDIT through most electric or gas utilities which can be performed remotely with your smart phone or online and are either provided for free through your utility or at very low cost.
CenterPoint Energy and/or Xcel Energy Customers are eligible for a FREE VIRTUAL HOME VISIT WITH HOME ENERGY SQUAD to help you find your biggest energy savings. This no-cost visit is conducted online or virtually to help you discover low-cost energy-saving opportunities. Home Energy Squad will also help identify possible future projects to save you even more, so you’ll be ready for action when the time comes.
The virtual HES visit is complementary to a future in-person visit — and you can do both! After the consultation, HES may find that you could benefit from some free, energy-saving products that they can install during a home visit when possible. Meanwhile, the virtual visit gets you started on energy savings that increase over time. Call 651-328-6220 or 1-866-222-4595, or visit the Home Energy Squad website to schedule your virtual visit.
MN Valley customers can log into a SMARTHUB using their account number and creating a password to see a report of their home’s day, month and years worth of electricity use. MN Valley also offers an ENERGY WISE energy audit at 952-492-2313.
New Prague Utilities provides a loaner WATTS METER you can borrow for a week. You plug the Watts Meter into your wall outlet and then plug the appliance into the Watts Meter to see what the appliance is actually using in electricity. New Prague Utilities also offers their customers energy star appliance rebates for dehumidifiers, refrigerators, washing machines and heating/cooling units at 952-758-4401.
With this increased control of your electric usage with less wasted energy, you will be making the most of your solar PV system that is perfectly sized for your wise energy use. Your solar PV system will undoubtedly be one of your most energy efficient appliances as it creates the energy for your home to use!
Talk to your Optimum Solar Group Energy Advisor to learn more about energy efficiency and the perfectly sized solar energy system for your home at 1-888-782-6910 or www.OptimumSolarGroup.com
Save Money. Save the Earth. Simply Smarter.
XCEL ENERGY HOME ENERGY AUDIT: