Tips for Saving Energy Over the Holidays

On December 6, 2007 by Lauren

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What with the decorations placed all over the interiors and exteriors of your home, your electricity bill’s sure to skyrocket during the holiday season. It doesn’t always have to be that way, though. Here are a couple of tips that you can follow to save energy and money this December.

Use LED Christmas lights, since these use 90% less electricity than regular Christmas lights and cost only $10 per strand. Fiber-optic decorations and Christmas trees are also great for energy efficiency since they only use one light bulb to light up the entire decoration.

Place a limit on the number of hours your lights are turned on. Wait til it’s completely dark before you switch on your Christmas lights, then turn them off before going to bed. Six hours or less of Christmas light-time is a reasonable amount to to aim for. If you have trouble forgetting to turn the lights off, set an alarm clock to remind you to do so.

Give out presents that don’t require batteries. Research shows that 40% of batteries are purchased over the holiday season. If you do plan on giving gifts that need batteries, consider purchasing rechargable batteries and a charger; the newest models are more energy-efficient than if you keep buying disposable ones.

Cook all your dishes at once. Make the most out of your oven and the energy it uses by baking all your Christmas pastries at the same time. It takes the same amount of energy to heat up a full oven as an empty one so you might as well take advantage of the energy you’re using up. Save the oven for cooking big dishes though, and use the microwave or toaster oven for minor holiday cooking jobs.

Finally, if you’re going somewhere for the holidays, make sure you unplug all your electronics like the TV, DVD player, computer, or radio. These use up electricity even when they aren’t switched on.

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