The confetti has fallen, the New Year’s ball has dropped, and 2017 has begun. Perhaps you were among the millions of people who resolved to eat better, exercise more, get organized, or save money.

While we can’t help you with your resolutions to get healthier or more organized, we can help you if you resolved to save money.

Virginia Energy Sense’s (VES) resolution this year is to help you save money through our energy education program.  At VES we want to educate Virginians about easy ways to save energy to help Virginia meet its goal of reducing electric energy consumption 10 percent below 2006 levels by 2022, which is now less than three years away.

Unlike some New Year’s resolutions that are often hard to achieve, saving energy, and money, is actually quite easy.

Here are several easy resolutions you can make to be more energy efficiency and save some money:

Energy (and Money) Saving New Year’s Resolutions for 2017

  • Cut the Power- Turn off lights, computers, and other equipment when they’re not in use and overnight. Leaving them on, or plugged in when not in use, leads to higher electric bills.
  • Pull the Plug- Use power strips to cluster devices together on one source, and unplug the master plug in order to shut them all off for the night.
  • Put Your Computers to Bed– Set sleep modes for your electronics such as computers, printers, and televisions so they go into energy saving mode after not being in use for extended time periods.
  • Update Those Bulbs– Replace your old school light bulbs with energy efficient light bulbs. These will save you money by saving you money on your electric bill and also last much longer than old school bulbs, meaning you have to buy and change bulbs far less frequently.
  • Be High Tech– Invest in a programmable thermostat to better manage cooling and heating costs at home and work.
  • Clean Your Air– Keep your HVAC systems running efficiently by having your system serviced once per year and by cleaning or changing your filters monthly. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, replacing the filters can reduce energy consumption up to 15% and increase savings by up to 7.5%.
  • Is Your Refrigerator Running?– In your kitchen, clean the refrigerator coils twice a year, replace refrigerator door gaskets if the door’s seals are not tight enough, utilize your crock pot more, and use the air dry option on your dishwasher instead of heated dry.
  • Rebates and Free Stuff- Look into government and utility energy saving programs to apply for rebates, energy audits and more!
  • Be Handy– Create a “draft-o-meter” with a pencil and a piece of plastic wrap and test your doors and windows for drafts. Then use weather stripping to shut down those drafts.

 For more tips and resources on how you can save energy at work, check out our At Home Tips.

Lesson Plans
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Get your students energized about responsible energy use! In partnership with the Virginia Department of Education, we’ve created fun, multi-day, Lesson plans to help you teach your students how to understand and conserve energy! They’re classroom-ready and free to use!