Ways to Save
The typical American household spends about $1,300 a year on energy bills, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Unfortunately, a large portion of that energy is wasted - through poorly insulated windows and doors and outdated and inefficient appliances, just to name a few. Review the sections below for ways we, as your local Touchstone Energy electric cooperative, can help you manage your energy use and save on your monthly electric bill.
Inexpensive Efficiency Measures You Can Take Now
By using a few inexpensive energy-efficient measures, you can reduce your energy bills by 10 to 50 percent, and, at the same time, help the environment. Try these common ways to reduce your energy usage:
- Use a programmable thermostat. In the winter, set the thermostat to 68 degrees while you're awake and lower it 10 - 15 degrees while you're asleep or away from home. In the summer, set your thermostat to 78 degrees only when you're at home and need cooling. Set it warmer at other times.
- Eliminate wasted energy. Turn off lights in empty rooms, and unplug appliances that you don't truly need. Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is burning.
- Reduce hot water temperature. Set your water heater to the "normal" setting, or 120 degrees, unless your dishwasher requires a higher setting. Shorten showers. Showers account for 2/3 of your water heating costs. Cutting your showers in half can reduce your water heating costs by 33 percent.
- Use appliances efficiently. Only wash full loads of laundry and dishes, and use the cold water setting for your clothes when you can. Be sure to clean your clothes dryer's lint trap after each use.
- Let your computer and monitor sleep. Set your computer to "sleep" if you're away from the machine for several minutes. When you're done using your computer, turn it off - leaving it in sleep mode still draws electricity.
- Unplug your electronics. Even when turned off, many new TVs, VCRs and other electronics continue to use electricity. When possible, unplug these devices when they are not in use. For computer scanners, printers and other devices that are plugged into a power strip, simply switch off the power strip after shutting down your computer.
Free Resources to Help Reduce Energy Use
TCEC has compiled these FREE resources to help you save on your energy bill.
- Complete this room-by-room checklist to see where you can save energy.
- Implement a few of these 101 Low Cost / No Cost Home Energy Savings Measures.
- Review the Home Energy Savings Guide for other actions you can take to reduce your energy usage.
- Visit Touchstone Energy Cooperative's TogetherWeSave.com website and enter your zip code to add up your savings using a free room-by-room application.
- Check out more ways to save at the Home Energy Savers Answer Desk.
- You can also visit the U.S. Department of Energy's "Energy Savers" site.
- Together We Learn from Touchstone Energy offers a cool place where kids can learn about electricity, energy savings and electrical safety. Energy is part of our daily lives. Every time you watch television or turn on a light you are using electricity. Kids Zone has some fun games and activities that will help kids learn about energy and energy efficiency.
- Choosing and using the right electric heater offers information on space heaters.
To have an expert from TCEC visit your home and make energy-saving recommendations, call us at 580-652-2418 and ask the member service representative for a free home energy survey. You may be asked to answer some questions. You may email your request if you include the following:
- Tri-County Account Number (if available)
- Preferred Contact Phone Number(s)
- Best Time to Reach You (Must be between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday - Friday)
- Description of Your Request