Easy Ways to Save Energy During the Holiday Season
During the holiday season, you’re most likely going to light up your house with Christmas lights and beautiful Christmas decorations. Here are some Christmas energy saving tips that we put together to try and help you keep your electric bill down during the holiday months.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #1: Use Candles
When you are trying to come up with some beautiful lighting ideas, consider using candles. Lighting candles uses no energy and will provide some fantastic mood lighting. For safety purposes, you might want to use battery-operated candles that are available in a variety of different colors and styles. You can get rechargeable tea lights, battery-operated taper candles and even some remote-control candles – now that’s convenient! Some battery-operated candles will even flicker so you’ll still achieve the non-electric mood lighting that is created by candles, but without the fire hazard.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #2: Use LED Christmas Lights
You may already have a large collection of Christmas lights from years past, but, if you’re ready for a change, donate them and get some LED lights. LED lights use 90% less electricity than typical, incandescent Christmas lights and, although they cost a bit more than incandescent lights, the small price difference is quickly made up when you consider that LED lights last longer than incandescent lights. LED lights are brighter and have a blue-ish tone, whereas incandescent lights have a warm, yellow glow. For more information on how to select Christmas lights, see our article Bright vs Warm White Christmas Lights.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #3: Limit the Light
There are some people who get so into the holiday spirit that they want their lights on all day and all night. If you think about it, Christmas lights and lighted Christmas decorations will not provide the same effect during the day as they do at night so turn them on at dusk and off before you go to bed. If remembering to control the lights is an issue for you, look for lights with a timing system or use a Weatherproof Outdoor Timer Power Strip that has a built-in photocell that will turn the lights on for you at dusk and off at dawn.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #4: Use Lighting Fixtures Less
If you have decorated with a lot of Christmas lights, you may not need to use your lamps and other permanent lighting fixtures quite as much. When your Christmas lights are plugged in, they may be bright enough to light the room for you, eliminating the need to flip one more switch. And of course, remember to always turn off the lights and other electronic components when you leave a room. If you have a fireplace, it might be a good time to get some logs and light up a fire to heat your home. Not only does it make the room more comfortable, but it will also save energy.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #5: Be Energy-Smart When Cooking & Baking
If you plan on doing some holiday cooking or baking, be smart. Consider using the microwave or toaster oven for smaller tasks such as melting chocolate for dipping, and keep the oven reserved for larger items, such as cooking a turkey. While cooking on the stove, keep the lids on your pots so your food will cook in less time.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #6: Walk
Many people tend to use the car more during the holidays because of all of the shopping and running around they have to do in cold winter weather. If you can, it might be fun to bundle up and walk down to Main Street to do some Christmas shopping, eliminating the need to fill up with gas. If you are looking for a cheap family outing, leave the car in the garage and walk around the neighborhood to look at your neighbor’s Christmas decorations.
Christmas Energy Saving Tip #7: Take Advantage of Body Heat
If you are having family or friends over for a party, you can really take advantage of the body heat that will generate in your home. Not only can you use body heat and turn the thermostat down when you have guests over, but it can work when you sleep as well. Warm up your bed by using flannel sheets and a heavier blanket so you can turn down the thermostat at night and let your body generate heat under the covers.