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Your air conditioner uses more energy than anything else  because our cooling season lasts so long. But did you know… …Your water heater accounts for about 13 percent of your energy bill? It’s the third largest energy expense in the home. Remedy that by using less hot water, turning the thermostat on the water heater down to 120 degrees, wrapping an insulating blanket around the water heater or buying a more energy-efficient model.  …Refrigerators, washing machines and clothes dryers are huge energy hogs? When combined with all of your other appliances, they account for about one-fifth of your family’s energy consumption. When you replace them, consider not just the selling price of the appliance, but how much it will cost to operate the machine over its lifetime. Choose the most energy-efficient model, which will have the least impact on your electric bill.   …Windows can pad your energy bill? They account for 10 percent to 25 percent of your heating and cooling bill. When it’s hot outside, your air conditioning system has to work harder to cool hot air that sneaks in through windows. If you’ve still got single-pane windows like half of U.S. homes, seriously consider upgrading to double-pane models with energy-efficient glass. Add sun screens or awnings to cover east-facing windows, which are a bull’s-eye for the bright morning sun, and west-side panes that can take a beating as the sun slips into the horizon each evening. ###

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