Conservation Practices-- Using what you have more efficiently
Anyone can be an energy wastrel, paying more on their monthly bills while causing our energy suppliers to generate more electricity, haul more propane and oil and wood. The idea is to make a smaller footprint while saving money.
Ronald Reagan famously quipped that energy conservation is "freezing in the dark." It doesn't have to come to that. Ever notice how two drivers of the same cars over the same route consume differing amounts of fuel? Trucking businesses sure have. They are always looking for ways to preserve equipment and reduce fuel costs. Lately, their long-haul rigs sport thin "skirts" beneath their trailers to break the air vacuum drag that forms there. Fuel costs now justify this expense.
You can learn to do the same things. Read the literature, try alternative use patterns, and observe your meters and billings. This will help you develop your own set of best practices like the trucking companies.
Common Conservation Practices
Maintenance of furnaces & other mechanical equipment
Night-time or non-occupancy thermostat set-back
(not recommended for heat pumps)
Reduced / raised thermostat in winter-summer
Reduced water flow in sinks, showers
Lowering water heater set point temperature
(use dishwasher on thermal boost setting)
Turning off lights, equipment when not in use
Stop all leaks of air or water
Use outside shade plantings to block summer sun