Holiday Energy Efficiency Tips

Save energy with these holiday energy efficiency tips from National Grid

The holiday season features festive lighting displays, cold nights and the shortest days of the year; what better time to focus on energy efficiency?

National Grid encourages customers to follow simple energy efficiency tips while decorating and entertaining this year to ensure that everyone enjoys safe, affordable and environmentally-friendly holidays.

According to Edward White, vice president, Customer and Business Strategy, National Grid, “Energy efficiency solutions such as LED lighting and advanced power strips allow our customers to spend less money on electricity and more on each other, and they will also help leave a cleaner world for future generations.”

Energy-efficient light-emitting diode (LED) decorative light strings have definite advantages over incandescent lighting because they use up to 90 percent less energy to produce the same amount of light, which results in significant savings. LEDs are also more durable and safer, especially when used around dry trees because unlike traditional lights that can get hot and pose a fire hazard, LED light bulbs always stay cool.

Advanced power strips can save up to $100 per year in energy costs by eliminating “standby energy loss.” When peripheral appliances such as audio equipment or computer monitors are not being used, they often still consume energy. Advanced power strips shut off electricity to such devices automatically, while maintaining power to products that need it, such as cable boxes or modems.

Additional holiday energy-saving tips:

Holiday Cooking – Use the smallest appliance, pan and burner while cooking to save energy. For example, microwave ovens require less than half the energy of a conventional oven. Slow cookers are great ways to cook for a family and save money. On average, a whole meal can be cooked in a slow cooker for 17 cents worth of electricity.

Smart Baking – Improve oven efficiency by keeping the doors closed as much as possible and baking several dishes at the same time and temperature.

Keeping Food Cool – Newer refrigerators are more energy-efficient than older ones. Refrigerators and freezers operate more efficiently when the doors are kept closed as much as possible. If necessary, leaving the doors open for a longer period of time is more efficient than opening and closing them several times.

Storing the Feast – Keep extra beverages and holiday leftovers cold by storing them in a garage or on a porch, if temperatures permit. Unplugging a second refrigerator or freezer can save $23 per month in electricity costs.

Washing the Dishes – Dishwashers use less water than running the water while hand-washing dishes. However, if washing by hand is the only option, using a wash and rinse basin saves water and money compared with letting the water run.

Turn Off the Lights – Limit the time that lights are on. Wait until dark to turn on your holiday lights; then, turn them off before you go to bed. Six hours or less of daily use is a good goal. Turning off room lights when the tree is lit can also make a difference. The lights on a holiday tree should provide more than enough lighting to navigate around the room.

Smart Gifts – Giving a television, computer or other big electronic gift this year? Do the right thing by purchasing a product with the ENERGY STAR label. For more information, visit