Energy saving myths and what to do about them

Energy saving myths and what to do about them

MARQUETTE — With recent hikes in energy costs it’s safe to say that U-P residents want to cut costs where they can, but may be doing it the wrong way. ABC 10’s Sarah Mac has more.

Here are a few energy-saving myths according to an article from ConsumerReports.org.

One: Switching to electric room heaters will reduce your energy bill.

A room heater might save you money if you have central electric, but not if you have central gas heating.

Two: Installing foam gaskets in electrical outlets will significantly reduce air leakage.

The article says that while this is often reported as quick fix, less than one percent of air leakage is due to outlets. So it’s probably better to invest in something that will give you more savings for the cost of the fix.

Three: Dimming incandescent lights by 50 percent will cut the lighting bill in half.

Consumer Reports says that the relationship between dimming and energy isn’t linear and it’s best to try a different type of bulb. Several cities in the U.P. offer trade-in programs for energy saving, LED light bulbs.

Four: buying an efficient air conditioner or furnace will automatically reduce the energy bill.

Just make sure it’s sized and installed properly, otherwise it is counterproductive to any savings.

Install Manager for Lowe’s Marquette Scott Smith says, “If you size the furnace too small it’ll work harder to heat or cool your space. So you want to size the furnace appropriate to the square foot of your house.

Finally number five: insulating the ceiling will just cause more heat to leak out the window. Not necessarily true.

“The best place to gain insulation is though your attic, through your ceiling,” Smith added, “that’s where your heat is lost. So you can upgrade your insulation in your attic by adding blown in insulation and or bat insulation, and we do install the cellulose insulation as well.”

Another way you can cut energy costs is to get “techy” with it. You can get a new smart-thermostat that’s controlled by touch and can be controlled by your smartphone. That way when you’re not home you can use your smartphone to cool down the house and you can eve set a timer using your smartphone to heat things back up before you walk in the door, that way you are not using any excess energy or heat while you’re not even at home.

To see the full article from Consumer Reports click here.

For more information about Lowe’s and it’s services click here.