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By John DiNapoli, municipal and community services manager for Unitil

If you are like me, you have probably made more resolutions than you can remember.  It is curious how the turn of the calendar necessitates the annual cleaning of the closets or the perennial lose-weight decree.

My resolution this year is to help you keep a resolution. I think it can be done, because these are fast and easy-to-keep resolutions for a more efficient home. For the past several years, we have been sharing with you many energy saving tips, so I dusted off my notes and found the low-hanging fruit. 

When it comes to energy, it is the green technologies and latest trends that we read or hear about. They are usually fairly expensive, so homeowners are reluctant to adopt them until cost come down. But here are low-cost ideas that will save energy.

Weatherstrip the door.  Unless you have a new door, it can probably benefit from new felt, rubber or vinyl weatherstripping, which will cut down on leaks.  It is an easy do-it-yourself project.

Install a programmable thermostat.  They will automatically turn down the heat when you are away or at night. You simply program it to turn on and off, based on your schedule. While these can get pricey, there are good models for less than $20.

Install aerators on all your faucets.  This simple step will not only reduce the amount of hot water you use, but will also cut your water bill. They can be installed by unscrewing the old aerator and installing a new one.

Change your showerhead.  If you have teenagers, you could save a fortune by installing a showerhead that flows at a rate of 1.0 gallon per minute, versus 2.5 gallons permitted.

Replace your furnace filter.  While many homes in our area have baseboard heat, we are finding more and more homes with furnaces. The experts recommend that the filter be replaced every three months, with some saying every month during the heating season.  A clean filter helps it run more efficiently.

Caulk, caulk and caulk.  The importance of sealing up your home can’t be overstated. This spring, look for any cracks around windows and doors and caulk them. In addition, seal any openings where pipes or wires enter your home. They sell special foam for this application (low-expansion, fireproof and other types). Make sure you use the correct one for your application.

Insulate your hot water pipes.  Anywhere you see exposed hot water pipes, insulate them. There are a couple types of insulation, foam or fiberglass, which cost a little more but have a higher R-value.

Swap out your incandescent light bulbs for CFLs.  By changing one light bulb, you will save about $50 over the life of CFL, which is about 10,000 hours.

Power strips tame the vampires.  In the industry, those tiny LED lights on radios, televisions and DVRs are called vampires, since they subsist by feeding off of electricity. A power strip allows you to easily turn them off until needed.

If you only make one resolution this year, make it an energy efficient one, which you’ll be able to keep, and realize the benefits from, for years to come. 

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About Unitil Corporation

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering natural gas and electricity in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 105,600 electric customers and 82,700 natural gas customers. For more information about our people, technologies, and community involvement please visit https://unitil.com.


For more information please contact:
Alec O'Meara

Media Relations Manager
OMeara@unitil.com
Phone: 603-773-6404

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