This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Lennox®. All opinions are 100% mine.
I live in Kansas where the summers are brutal, and the winters aren’t kind, either. Having grown up in an area with mild year-round temperatures, I knew very little about saving energy when I first moved to the Midwest. So little, in fact, that there were months when my utility bills were higher than my car payment!
Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to save energy. Today, I’m going to share with you three tips that helped me reduce my utility bills by almost half! But first, I want to tell you about a fantastic contest hosted by Lennox® because, let’s face it, most of us would rather save money on cooling costs than walk around our homes nude.
You’ve no doubt heard of Lennox®, the manufacturer of the Ultimate Comfort System™, one of the most efficient HVAC systems on the market. Among its stellar components is the XC25 — the quietest air conditioner you can buy, and one which delivers industry-leading efficiencies that can save you hundreds of dollars every year. Want to know more? Check out the dealer locator
for a Lennox® distributor near you.
Energy Savings Superstar Contest:
This year’s Grand Prize includes:
- $10,000 in Lennox® heating and air conditioning
- A year supply of ice
- Tickets to the closest local water park
To enter: Visit the Lennox® Energy Savings Superstar Contest page by August 31 and submit your best energy saving tip plus a photo that showing your tip in action. The four best tips will be chosen as finalists; then the public gets to vote between September 12 – 18 to choose the best one. The Grand Prize winner will be announced on September 28. To get all of the details, check out the official contest rules.
3 Tips To Save Energy
1. Open Curtains Selectively
We all love the look of sunlight streaming through the windows and filling our homes with natural light, especially on gorgeous summer days. Unfortunately, throwing back the curtains to enjoy the view can raise your energy bills, even if you’ve installed good quality replacement windows. That doesn’t mean you have to live in a dark, dreary home with the curtains pulled tight — it just means you should be smart about the best times to open or close your curtains.
Summer: Keep sunlight from adding heat to your home — which will make your AC work harder — by leaving curtains or blinds closed when the sun is directly hitting your windows. In my house, this means opening curtains on the west side of the house during the morning while leaving the curtains on the east side closed until around noon. Once the sun is overhead, I reverse that, closing the curtains on the west-facing windows and opening those on the east. The result is that our bedrooms and living room are now 10 degrees cooler, and that means my air conditioner isn’t struggling so much.
Winter: On sunny days use the sun’s ability to heat a room in your favor by opening curtains on the sunny side of your home early in the day. Remember, even the best windows will let a little heat escape from your home in the winter, so once the sun starts going down be sure to close all of your curtains up tight.
2. Use Ceiling Fans Properly
Ceiling fans don’t just improve a room’s appearance; they can also help lower your energy costs year round. While ceiling fans don’t lower the temperature in a hot room, they do help you feel cooler by circulating the air and simulating a breeze. The more blades a fan has, the less hard the fan’s motor has to work to circulate that air, and longer blades help move more air in larger rooms. You can use these things to help lower your utility bills by making one simple change based on the season.
Summer: Using the fan to blow air downward will help people in the room feel cooler. To make sure your fan is properly set for the summer stand beneath it and look up; the blades should be moving in a counter clockwise position. If they are not, turn the fan off completely and, once it’s stopped rotating, flip the switch on the side of the fan’s motor housing. You’ll also want to operate the fan at the highest speed. But remember: fans cool people, not rooms, so be sure to turn your fan off if there’s no one around to enjoy it.
Winter: Hot air rises, so if you often find yourself shivering even though the heater has been working hard it’s probably because all of the warm air is up near the ceiling. To circulate it down where you can enjoy it, reverse your ceiling fan’s direction. Again, you want to make sure the fan has completely stopped moving before you flip the switch on the housing to send the blades rotating in a clockwise direction. Since you just want to move the warm air downwards, not create a breeze, use the fan’s lowest speed setting.
3. Change Temperatures When You Sleep
My utility bills usually run higher than many other peoples’ because I work at home. I simply cannot stand sweating all over my keyboard on hot summer days, or shivering at my desk during the winter, so I keep our thermostat set at a daytime temperature that prevents this. For the longest time, I left it set at the same temperature at night, and my utility bills reflected this. Now that I’ve installed a programmable thermostat the temperature automatically changes at bedtime, but even if you’re using a manual thermostat, you can still save money by changing your setting before you go to sleep.
Summer: The air in your home doesn’t need to be as cool if you’re not up and moving around. If you’ve got a ceiling fan over your bed, so much the better! Bump your thermostat setting up a few degrees before bedtime (for me that means changing it from 73° to 78°F), sleep in lightweight pajamas, and keep that ceiling fan over your bed rotating counter-clockwise on the highest setting. You won’t even notice the temperature change but your utility bill certainly will!
Winter: It doesn’t make sense to heat the house when everyone is bundled up in bed, so lower the setting before you hit the hay. (For me that means dropping it from 66° to 60°F.) Use flannel sheets (which retain body heat), add an extra blanket to your bed, and sleep in heavier weight pajamas and you’ll stay cozy warm all night long. Don’t like waking to a cold house in the morning? Then consider installing a programmable thermostat and set it to raise the temperature before you rise.
Remember to share your tips with Lennox®
Contest Rules: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Canada (excluding Quebec) U.S. (DC) the age of majority in their jurisdiction. Ends 8/31/2016. For Prize info and Official Rules visit here. Sponsor: Lennox. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received.