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Simple Ways to “Green” Your Holiday Home Routine

The holiday season is filled with gatherings, cooking, baking and plenty of cheer. With many activities taking place in your home to celebrate the end of the year, you might not realize the extra energy being consumed. As you begin your holiday preparations, consider incorporating these energy-efficient ideas.

Use LED Lights. Update your traditional holiday lights to light-emitting diode bulbs known as LEDs. This energy-efficient light source will keep your home merry and bright, inside and out. ENERGY STAR-labeled decorative light strings use 75% less energy than conventional incandescent light strings. The bulbs do not have any moving parts, so they are much more durable and shock-resistant than other light strings. You might also want to consider using an automatic timer that will turn on and shut off your lights at a set time to help save energy.

Adjust Your Thermostat Downward During Gatherings. Are you going to throw an ugly Christmas sweater party or host any type of gathering at your home this year? If so, consider turning down your thermostat when you have a full house this season. With more family and friends in your home, chances are it will get warm in your home, and there won’t be a need to constantly run your thermostat as you entertain.

Save Energy When You’re Away. Did you know some devices in your home continue to use energy and drain power even when they are turned off? These so-called “energy vampires” lurk throughout your home and can account for as much as 20% of your electric bill. Before leaving home for an extended stay away this holiday, identify the culprits and unplug these devices. Examples of energy vampires include coffee makers, toasters and other appliances that are plugged in but aren’t in use all the time.

Plan Your Cooking Schedule. Baking or making special seasonal meals is a significant part of many holiday traditions. To lower your energy consumption, try baking or cooking multiple dishes in your oven at the same time and use all the oven racks. It may be tempting but try not to peek too much at your dishes because you lose heat each time you open your oven door.

Your home can be energy efficient year-round. Builders and remodelers that have a National Association of Home Builders Certified Green Professional (CGP)™ designation are industry professionals committed to helping you make your home green – efficient, comfortable, healthy and durable.

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