Conserve Your Holiday Heat

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Winter is here! Schools are covering their windows in paper snowflakes, parents are taking boots and scarves out of the closet, and noses are turning red. The fall tours of Duke Energy’s free, in-school programs The Conservation Caper and Energy Agents are coming to an end, and actors are saying “farewell for now” to students all over Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, North Carolina and South Carolina.

Though autumn is over, the My Energy Kit Challenge is not! As the cold winds start to blow, students and their families can take some simple steps to ensure that they conserve fuel for heat, trap heat inside their homes and use less electricity. Each Energy Kit that your school requests as part of Duke Energy’s in-school programs can help. Not only will the items in the Energy Kit make your house more energy efficient, every request takes your school one step further in the My Energy Kit Challenge. 100 Energy Kit requests = $250 for your school. That’s a lot of money for holiday treats!

Here are some tips to keep the “waste” out of winter, with a little boost from your Energy Kit:

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Snuggle up in your winter best! Instead of turning the heat up, put on a sweater and warm socks. Keep blankets on your couch for movie-watching sessions and parties, and plop down an area rug to keep cool air from chilling the floor.

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Pile on those blankets and turn down the heat while you sleep. If you’re worried about keeping the house warm for a certain jolly nighttime visitor bearing presents, don’t fret. He’s probably used to the cold. And after you request a free Energy Kit, there will be an energy-saving LED Night Light to guide the way.

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MyEnergyKit Logo

The sun is for more than just summer fun: it’s free heat! Open the curtains on your south-facing windows during winter days to soak up those rays. Close your curtains when the sun goes down to keep the heat inside.

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The Energy Kit for Duke Energy customers contains Energy Star Approved LED Bulbs. Did you know that some holiday lights come with LED bulbs, too? Keep your eye out for LED holiday lights, which use at least 75 percent less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent lighting.* Your decorations will be just as bright, using less electricity.

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Turn on your ceiling fan—wait a minute. Ceiling fans help heat your home? That’s right. Turning your fan clockwise will trap heat inside, and if you keep your ceiling fan on a low setting, it will gently push hot air back down.

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MyEnergyKit Logo

Skip a trip to the tropics and get a humidifier. Hot air inside your home can often mean dry air. Moist air not only feels warmer, it holds heat better, so a humidifier can help you feel comfortable when your thermostat is set at a lower temperature.

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When it comes to homes, you may have heard the saying: location, location, location. Nikki Neutron and The Energized Guyz have a saying, too: “insulation, insulation, insulation.” Cover up all those areas where heat might escape. Start with the Switch and Outlet Insulators that come in every free Energy Kit. Then try foam weather stripping for your doors and windows. Inexpensive insulation should be stocked in your local home improvement store.

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MyEnergyKit Logo

Got a holiday ham coming out of the oven soon? How about stuffing on the stove? If your kitchen gets smoky, use exhaust fans only when necessary. Exhaust fans pull the rising hot air out of the room and out of your house. Set a timer for that ham, and make sure to shut fans off when you are done with them.

Looking for more energy saving tips? There’s more where these came from in the D.O.E. Energy Savers Booklet, included in every Energy Kit as part of the in-school programs from Duke Energy. Request your Energy Kit today, and stay warm out there!

* http://www.energy.gov/energysaver/led-lighting

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