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SBU Offers Fall Tips, Online Energy Calculator

Fall is the time to focus on small changes to improve energy efficiency and save money in the process.

Every fall, SBU recommends that customers:

  • Open shades or blinds during the day to let in the sun’s heat.
  • Look for air leaks, which can add as much as 10 percent to a household’s monthly energy bill. Caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows prevents heat from escaping.
  • Make sure furniture and curtains aren’t blocking heating vents.
  • Have the home’s heating system serviced and change filters monthly when in use.
  • Turn down the thermostat to 68 degrees or lower, especially at night or when no one is home.

SBU also offers an online tool that can show customers how various changes – from changing a light bulb to installing a new appliance – can have a lasting impact. Home Energy Suite is a free resource that provides useful details about customers’ energy bills and generates tailored money-saving recommendations within minutes. Complete a simple home profile by answering questions such as the approximate age of the home, number of occupants and type of heating to determine simple next steps.

“Customers often want to know how much they can save by installing a new energy-efficient furnace or by lowering their thermostat during the day, for example,” said Jim Stawicki at SBU. “Home Energy Suite makes that information readily available.”

For example, customers can click on Home Energy Suite’s Lighting Calculator and enter in the number of lamps in the home, the number of hours used and the average wattage of incandescent light bulbs in use. Switching to CFL bulbs in just four 75-watt lamps that are used three hours per day will save the household more than $200, according to the calculator.

In addition, Home Energy Suite can help customers:

  • Identify factors that are causing changes in energy usage from month to month;
  • View a chart that breaks down the percentage of total annual energy use by appliance or system type.
  • Calculate the potential savings from changes such as adjusting water heater settings, reducing air leaks, adding insulation, installing storm windows; and
  • Compare the energy costs associated with different types of lighting, appliances and televisions. Home Energy Suite’s Library offers year-round, no-cost or low-cost tips to save energy, and the Kids Korner features games and teacher lesson plans.

To use the Home Energy Suite click here.

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