Enter The Haunted Energy House

Joanna Schroeder

gI_86333_haunted-house_200The United States celebrated Halloween yesterday and to pay homage to the holiday, ClearlyEnergy created an energy haunted house that unmasks the energy gremlins lurking in your home. Here are some fun tips to banish the gremlins and ghosts from your home (well, at least until Halloween next year).

  • Afraid of the dark? Don’t be: 11 percent of the typical household energy budget goes to lighting, so just turning off the lights can reap ghostly good savings. Avoiding the ghoulish gloom, save by using more compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) instead of incandescent bulbs, or better yet: go straight to LEDs.
  • Familiar with energy saving angels battling comfort demons on the thermostat front? Programmable thermostats can cut the tug-of-war: make the savings when nobody’s home or when everybody’s asleep.
  • Letting old showers & toilets RIP (aka rest in peace) can save big bucks. Low-flow shower heads use less than half the gallons per minute of older regular models, and cut the electricity and gas use needed to heat all that water. Newer toilet models flush a whole lot less water down the …toilet!
  • Think being a tech geek unleashes the electricity demons? Think again! While home electronics are the fastest-GROWING part of the household electric bill, over two-thirds still goes to the big stuff: lights, heat & a/c. Turning off a mobile phone all night for a year (rather than leaving it plugged in) saves 50c, while washing clothes cold rather than hot for a year saves $80. So to save green and be green, not point fiddling with a tablet’s power settings (but beware of the XBox, TV and computer gremlins).
  • How does doing laundry make us energy devils? Washers which are not EnergyStar maniacally throw money away. A typical non-EnergyStar top-loading washer uses over ten thousand gallons of water per year (that’s over $100 in water costs) and another $100 to heat all that water and run the machine. An EnergyStar model (even the top loading kind, rather than the even more efficient front load variety) uses half as much water and a third less power.
  • Think the emissions from the witch’s cauldron look pretty icky? Any ancient fridge is also causing some serious human earth farts (greenhouse gas emissions). Refrigerators made in the 80s use about four times as much electricity and cost $200 more each year than modern ones, and even 90s models suck down twice as much power as those made in the past couple years.

Click here to experience the full interactive tour of the energy-haunted house.

Clean Energy, Education, energy efficiency