The Energy Source

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Room-by-Room Savings: The Living Room

living room illustration

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that homeowners typically spend about $2,000 every year on their energy bills. We’ve put together a series of posts that will show you how to save energy in your home, room-by-room. We’ve already covered the kitchen, now let’s move on to the living room.

Electronics: When purchasing electronics for your home, always look for the ENERGY STAR.

  • ENERGY STAR certified televisions are 25% percent more energy efficient on average than conventional models.
  • Did you know that ENERGY STAR certifies home theater systems, set-top boxes, routers, and Blu-ray and DVD Players? However you set up your entertainment system, make sure to look for the little blue label for an energy-efficient choice.

Heating and Cooling: Do you have a ceiling fan in your living room? Make sure it’s working together with your HVAC system. 

  • During winter, reverse your ceiling fan and lower your thermostat by 5°F. Set your thermostat 2°F higher when using a ceiling fan in the summer for additional savings.
  • Don’t heat and cool rooms you aren’t using. Change your thermostat settings each season, and use the “vacation” setting on most thermostats when you’re away to avoid heating an empty room.

Efficient Tips: You have energy-efficient electronics and products, so make sure to use them efficiently!

  • Use your gadgets wisely by plugging your electronics into a smart powerstrip. The strip detects when your products are no longer in use, and saves you on bills by reducing “standby” power costs.
  • If you stream your entertainment, make the right choice of device. Streaming through a notebook or tablet is more energy efficient than using your game console.
  • Always be sure to turn off lights, fans, and electronics when you leave the room.

Lighting: Upgrade your living room lighting with ENERGY STAR certified bulbs, which use 70-90% less energy than standard bulbs. In living rooms, where comfort and ambience are key considerations, emphasize accent and task lighting, with a minimum of general lighting. Start with accent lighting over bookshelves, special artwork, a fireplace or entertainment system. Add table, floor or recessed lights for reading areas. Complete the room with a close-to-ceiling fixture for general lighting, or an ENERGY STAR certified ceiling fan/light for air circulation.

Stay tuned for upcoming posts with tips and resources on how to save energy (and money!) in other areas of your home.

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