Meet Dimitri L.

Most of us have several entertainment devices — TV, DVD, satellite tuner, receiver, etc. — and they are all consuming electricity in standby mode. Using power strips saves you money by eliminating vampire energy.

- Dimitri L.

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Meet Priscilla D.

Six months ago my washer died and the dryer was on its way out. I went to purchase a new one and got into a discussion with the salesman about ENERGY STAR appliances. I purchased an ENERGY STAR washer, thinking that it probably would not make that much of a difference. Boy was I wrong — not only did my utility bill go down, but I was using fewer products to clean the clothes so I was saving money both ways. I am now hooked on energy-efficient appliances. My next purchase will be a dishwasher and disposal and you can be sure that I will be looking for the ENERGY STAR.

- Priscilla D.

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Meet Timothy S.

I have dedicated myself and my family to investing in ENERGY STAR windows, hot water heater, light bulbs, ceiling fans, TVs, fridge, dishwasher, and washer. This is what my family and I have replaced in the last two years in trying to do our part. Every time I visit some of our family I am always stressing to them the importance of taking care of the earth. I want to save what we can for our children so we need to take care of what we have.

- Timothy S.

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Meet Boeing E.

We just purchased an ENERGY STAR qualified dishwasher a month ago. We've upgraded all of our light bulbs to energy-efficient ones, and we've upgraded three of our large windows, one sky dome window, and our sliding door windows to the new coated energy saving glass. We hope to get the last three large windows updated this next year.

- Boeing E.

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Meet Tara

I unplug everything in the house that we aren't using including TVs and the coffee maker even though it drives my husband nuts!

- Tara

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Meet David

With six kids at home, laundry can be a daunting enterprise. We fought back by getting a front loading pair washer and dryer, and ended up cutting our water bill in half. We know that we are saving energy and detergent but the water savings are awesome!

- David

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Meet Pamela D.

We made two major appliance changes. We started buying mostly fresh healthy food and virtually no processed food, which resulted in us being able to unplug and stop using our chest freezer. We also replaced our old refrigerator with a new ENERGY STAR refrigerator. Instead of owing at least the $175 and then some for my last monthly payment, I had a $178 credit- this is real money and real savings!

- Pamela D.

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Meet Jodie Q.

My husband and I recently purchased new ENERGY STAR appliances for our home. We also installed solar panels on our home last June in order to help our environment.

- Jodie Q.

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Meet Sheran B.

I put everything in the refrigerator at one time so I don�t keep the door open too long and waste energy. Also, I cover all windows that allow a lot of sunlight inand turned the thermostat setting up 3 degrees. We also set our hot water heater to 95 degrees—it really saves and we still have plenty of hot water for bathing.

– Sheran B.

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Meet Mendi B.

I installed new vinyl Low E/Argon filled windows throughout the house, a new fiberglass entry door and new sliding glass door last year. In the process, I was able to use expanding foam to fill in all gaps. Our furnace used to run constantly during cold spells, and last winter, our house stayed "toasty" and ran MUCH less! I found a huge gap in the attic and insulated it—it stopped a draft on both floors of our home. All light bulbs have been switched to CFLs. For a new home we just purchased, I bought only ENERGY STAR qualified appliances when available. I will install sensors to turn lights off wherever possible.

– Mendi B.

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Meet Kevin

We went through our home measuring and recording how much energy each electrical device used. For example, we found that the stereo system was using 23 watts even though it was turned off. For devices not frequently used, we now make sure they are unplugged when not in use. For devices used more frequently, where practical, they are on power strips to prevent any power usage after device is turned off. We�ve realized how much we�re saving just by making sure devices are unplugged and not using any energy.

– Kevin

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Meet Mark W.

I recently moved into a 60 year old house with old windows that I plan to replace soon. In the meantime, I found other ways to cut my energy usage. I use CFLs in areas where lights are often used: bathroom, kitchen, hallways, and lamps. I also replaced my old thermostat with a programmable one which has literally saved me hundreds of dollars on my electric/gas bill. My new computer is not only ENERGY STAR qualified, but I have set it to shut down after 45 minutes of non–use. This ensures it will power down every night. I have also tried to be more cognizant of energy uses by putting items such as TVs, DVD players, and Video game consoles with power indicator lights on power strips so they will not use power when not in use. These changes take little effort and time. I have noticed reductions in my energy usage and costs.

– Mark W. ��

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Meet Nancy

We're replacing light bulbs with CFL bulbs. We use a programmable thermostat so we don't heat or cool our home unnecessarily while away or sleeping. In the basement we use a hot water heater blanket and we buy solar lights for landscaping outside and to highlight our flag. In the rooms we use shade cloth over the patio and vinyl shades outside the bedroom windows to help keep the rooms cool and we close the insulted drapes before the home starts heating up. When it�s cool outside we open the windows and doors to use the outside air instead of the air conditioning on hot days. We�ve also bought ENERGY STAR qualified appliances as we replace our older ones. We also try to get everyone to turn off their lights when they leave a room.

– Nancy

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Meet Renee R.

My husband and I have replaced all of our appliances in one year. This includes ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer, refrigerator, dishwasher and HVAC system. My outdoor front and back porch lighting is compact fluorescent lighting. Our walkway and garden lights are solar powered LEDs. Instead of throwing away office paper that has been printed on one side that we no longer need, we flip the paper over and print on the other side. We do not print anything that does not need to be printed to save paper.

– Renee R.

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Meet Kristen M.

My fianc� and I purchased our first home together in May of 2008, and spent most of the year trying to learn ways that we could save money. We quickly learned that the easiest way to save money is to simply save energy. We had to purchase new appliances as soon as we moved in, so we opted to buy ENERGY STAR qualified products; however, we decided to keep the original light bulbs, thermostat, and insulation that came with the house. That was, until we started to see how much the cost of heating and cooling our home had begin to rise. We finally broke down and bought a programmable thermostat that allows us to turn the system down or completely off when we're away from home all day. We also have replaced our insulation in the attic, and replaced almost every light bulb with a CFL. They cost a little more, but they have lasted forever compared to the regular bulbs. So for anyone who wonders whether or not they really are using excess energy, just make the changes in your home and see for yourself! Your electric and gas bill will show you the proof.

– Kristen M.

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Meet Jennifer C.

I replaced a number of light bulbs with CFLs, discovered the heat drying switch on my dishwasher and turned it off, put my computer and TV/VCR combo on power strips and turn them off each night, and unplug my microwave and phone rechargers when not in use. My electric bill dropped by $40 the following month. There has been no inconvenience and the savings going forward have been substantial.

- Jennifer C.

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Meet Dave R.

I ride my bike to work three to four days a week, about 7 miles each way. Not only do I save wear and tear on my car and use less gas, but I am in better shape! Also, we use a clothes line to dry our laundry which saves energy and makes the clothes smell better. We open the windows of our house when the weather is nice instead of turning on the air conditioning, and we installed rain barrels at the downspouts of our house (I have 2 and I am planning to add 2 more.) Lastly, we have a garden and are growing some of our own vegetables.

- Dave R.

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Meet Gabriella L.

Appliances that are plugged in, but switched off, are still drawing on electricity, so I unplug appliances that are not used on a daily basis, such as extra TVs, table and floor lamps, washer and dryer, radios/stereos. The first month that we did this we saved over $100 on our electric bill.

- Gabriella L.

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Meet Lee S.

Over the last couple of years I have been saving energy by installing new double-glazed windows and buying a new energy-efficient washer. We have not had a dryer in 15 years and use an old fashioned drying line.

We also have an energy-efficient refrigerator, tankless water heater, compact fluorescent bulbs, and electronic ballasts. I removed our air conditioner unit in 1994 and I installed a swamp cooler, which I have replaced once and set on low most of the time. I am currently using an attic fan which I plan on replacing with a solar one and I have solar landscape lights. I am a firm believer in saving energy where I can, including my place of work.

I suggested turning off the lights in my company�s warehouse, as we have fifteen 400 watt metal halide high bays, but we have 8 foot by 4 foot skylights through out and they bring in enough light. We do not need the lights on at all, if only we had been doing that for the last 13 years we would have saved a lot of energy and money.

- Lee S.

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Meet Kathy N.

I've been using compact fluorescent bulbs for years, even though my family didn't like the color of the light. Our old fridge was not working very well, and I decided that we needed to replace it with an ENERGY STAR qualified model. As we are anticipating an empty nest in a few years, we bought a smaller sized fridge as well. After installing the new fridge and recycling the old one, I noticed that our already small electric bill dropped by $20 per month. I'm now looking at the chest freezer and thinking of replacing it.

When we replaced our broken washing machine with an ENERGY STAR front loader, I started keeping track of how much detergent and bleach we used when washing clothes. The machine gets the clothes so much cleaner and a bottle of bleach lasts a year instead of a month, and the powdered detergent lasts almost forever. I dry everything but whites on racks in my dining room or back porch, which saves $1 per load cost to run our dryer. The savings in detergent alone has made up for the price difference between top and front loading washers, and my family loves the way the clothes look and feel.

The best thing about our efforts to save energy is that we didn't have to radically change the way we live. Friends and relatives ask us how come we have such low energy bills when we live in an older house. Besides the fact that we are very frugal when it comes to heating and cooling, the other changes we�ve made have saved us a ton of money and limit the amount of damage that we do to the earth. This year's goal for our family is to increase our recycling to at least 75% of trash. It might not be easy, but critical to our children's future.

- Kathy N.

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Meet Renee

I have changed all the light bulbs in our home to energy-efficient ones, even the porch lights. I use earth friendly dishwashing pellets for my dishwasher. My washer and dryer are efficient and I intend to get a new refrigerator later this year. We recycle our newspapers and papers that we use in the home. We plant our own tomatoes and have planted three trees. This year we had 10 trees planted for us in a national forest. Everyone can make a difference. We have but one earth. I always try to use my cloth grocery bags (sometimes I forget). Thanks and have a green Earth Day.

- Renee

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Meet Kevin R.

I reduce my energy bills by using ENERGY STAR qualified appliances. Currently, I have an ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerator, dishwasher, and furnace. I hope to replace my washing machine some day so that all of my appliances meet this standard. The little things also add up. I use CFLs, ENERGY STAR qualified TV and computer monitor, and solar landscape lighting to further reduce my electricity bill.

- Kevin R.

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Meet Claudia

Growing up in a third world country, I learned to save energy and to save water. To go green in New York City I have purchased energy-efficient light bulbs, sealed air leaks, and changed filters for air conditioners.

- Claudia

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Meet Kasie T.

I just moved into a new home and I purchased new CFL bulbs to install throughout. I also purchased a new washer and fridge that have the ENERGY STAR logo. The salesman recommended I check with my local power company for any rebates for upgrading my appliances. It took me a total of one week to purchase and install and now hope to see the savings.

- Kasie T.

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Meet Joan V.

My Husband and I have purchased some new ENERGY STAR qualified appliances in the past year. Our favorite appliance is our LG front load washer. The washer uses much less water, which also reduced our water bills. It spins the clothes so well that the drying time is shortened therefore reducing our electricity bills. They are both large capacity so we don't need to do as many loads. I can even fit my queen sized comforter in the washer and don't need to make the trip to the laundromat any longer. I dry my laundry on my clothes line outside also.

- Joan V.

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Meet Jeffery H.

I have changed all my light bulbs to ENERGY STAR CFLs. I have two ENERGY STAR qualified computers and an ENERGY STAR laptop. I also have bought a flat panel TV, which is ENERGY STAR qualified, as well as my clothes wash air conditioner and refrigerators, which are all qualified.

- Jeffery H.

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Meet Ronnie T.

I decided to try CFLs and put them in two rooms. Then we had to replace our washing machine and refrigerator so we bought ENERGY STAR qualified models. Even with the cost of utilities going up, we noticed our bill was around twenty dollars cheaper during the summer. We replaced bulbs in two more rooms.

- Ronnie T.

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Meet Debbie D.

We started by changing our light bulbs and it has blossomed from there. We purchased new garage doors and a new front door, both of which qualified for the energy tax rebate last year. This year we purchased three programmable thermostats and we turned off our computers when they were not in use. For our 2009 project, we will be replacing our kitchen appliances with ENERGY STAR qualified ones.

- Debbie D.

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Meet Linda J.

I set my furnace to 67 degrees, have low-e windows (most have no curtains to let in natural light and heat), and I've switched to CFL lighting. I only use the air conditioner if really necessary, but mostly I use ceiling fans to circulate the air. I try my best to block cold air that may enter through my windows and doors and I partially dry most of my clothes and then hang them to dry. My laundry is done only in cold water. I only use the dishwasher when it is a full load. I turn the computer off when it's not in use and I unplug or turn off appliances when they are not in use.

- Linda J.

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Meet Jayme

We replaced all the bulbs in our home with energy-efficient CFL bulbs. This year we purchased a new front-loading ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer. When we went to compare our costs to the same time last year, we have cut back significantly on our bills and know we are using less energy. We do our best to turn lights off when we are not in the room, and our computers all have sleep modes which turn on automatically when they're not in use for a specified period of time. Being in Tampa, FL summer days can get hot, so we keep the temperature of the house at a steady 78 degrees and use the fans to cool down the house if we need cooler air. In the winter we save by shutting down the air conditioner and opening the windows to allow the cool air to circulate. Our next door neighbor pays double the cost we do on the electricity bill — I know we are saving!

- Jayme.

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Meet James K.

We just bought a new refrigerator and we close the blinds at night on all windows. We already have ENERGY STAR qualified windows, so this adds another layer of insulation. The vents under our house are made so that in the fall we can close them to help retain heat under the house.

- James K.

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Meet Christine

We use only ENERGY STAR qualified CFL bulbs and keep the lights off as much as possible. We have double pane windows, use only biodegradable natural soaps, cleaning agents, and we use a lot of white vinegar in cleaning. We have an ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer and hope to get an ENERGY STAR refrigerator soon. Also, we unplug everything we can during the day and night when not in use.

- Christine

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Meet Kaye S.

First I changed all my light bulbs to CFLs. Then I caulked around all my windows and doors. I bought welcome mats and flooring for my kitchen and bath made from recycled tires. I had ENERGY STAR qualified appliances put in and a programmable thermostat installed. I have blinds and insulated curtains on my windows to keep heat out in summer and cold out in winter, and I open my door to let in natural sunlight when necessary. I have two rain barrels that catch rain water from my gutters and I use the water to wash my car and water my flowers and landscape. I have a white roof which reflects the sun instead of drawing it towards my home. I want to do my part for the environment while saving money at the same time.

- Kaye S.

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Meet Charlene

We have power strips for all the entertainment and computer equipment and when we are finished with the equipment, we just turn off the power strip. When we charge phones, same thing-after use, we unplug the charger so that it is not a continuous power drain. We changed out alarm clocks to those with battery backup so that we can unplug the unit when not in use, but it saves the settings, and we just plug in again when ready to use.

- Charlene

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Meet Stephen E.

I put energy efficient dual-pane windows in my house for which I received a tax rebate. I also installed ceiling fans in all the rooms of the house and purchased CFLs for the light fixtures to replace old incandescent bulbs. Next I purchased a new storm door and insulation strips that go around the doors to keep outside air from entering the house. Lastly, I have lowered my water heater by 10 degrees.

- Stephen E.

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Meet Fred

I turn on my air conditioner only in the afternoon and keep it on for approximately 1 hour. During the time when the air conditioner is off, I use a floor fan to maintain coolness in the room. I seldom have to turn on the air conditioner again during the night. If I really need to, then I only keep it on for 1/2 hour. I have noticed that these actions have reduced my electric bill each month.

- Fred

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Meet John S.

Our family has changed all the bulbs throughout our home to energy-efficient CFLs. We also installed an attic fan, a new ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer and dishwasher, and have been using a battery powered electric lawn mower for the past two years. This is a small contribution to our environment.

- John S.

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Meet Dave

I have 9 rental homes and 5 of those are double tenant units which give me a total of 14 rentals. I supply all utilities to 12 of those. I put CFL bulbs in all the ceiling fans and lamps as well as upgraded to new 13 SEER heat pumps in all units as I purchased them. I put all units on budget plans and my total electric bills are less than $1,300 per month year round! I also supply the bulbs for each unit which includes replacements.

- Dave

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Meet Laura

My husband started to improve our home's energy efficiency by switching out a few light bulbs. A few light bulbs turned into ALL light bulbs and next we purchased an ENERGY STAR qualified clothes washer. Now we save on our water bill as well as our electric bill! The switch cut our water bill in half and reduced our electric bill by a third! We are really happy with the changes and inspire others to make changes as well!

- Laura

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