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On the hunt for holiday LEDs on the cheap

December 21, 2016   By Willard Strong in Reduce The Use

Strings of holiday LEDs are at bargain prices after Christmas, and LEDs can save up to 80 percent in energy costs.

I’m a bargain hunter. Why pay retail this time of year when you can do some bargain hunting and save money, sometimes 50 percent or more?

Although Black Friday, Cyber Monday and pre-holiday sales have come and gone for another year, there are some real deals beginning the day after Christmas when it comes to holiday lighting in general – and energy efficient LEDs in particular.

In my hunting expeditions, I’ve found the LED “happy hunting ground” happens to be two of the big-name pharmacy chains. These stores mark down the multicolored and white strings of 50 to 100 lights (or more) that didn’t make it to consumers’ hearths, wreaths and trees this year. It’s like an Island of Misfit Lights, instead of an Island of Misfit Toys. And when you use them for the first time, you’ll feel like these lights are shining all the brighter because they cost you less.

Although your neighbors, and... Continue Reading >>

Weathering the dark

November 16, 2016   By Jessica Yourko in Reduce The Use

Replacing lighting with more energy-efficient LED fixtures can save you money.

Everyone who knows me knows that this is my favorite time of year.

By now, I have already decked my halls, trimmed the tree and checked my list at least twice. On Nov. 1, with a witch under one arm and Santa under the other, the transition begins. Always. Every year…except for this one. We pretty much just skip fall and go straight to winter.

With the cleanup from Hurricane Matthew still underway, my world has somehow gotten off kilter. I can’t seem to get into the spirit.

Looking forward though, I realize that there are so many things to be thankful for this November. The presidential election is over. Hallelujah! We are almost officially out of hurricane season. Thanksgiving will be upon us in no time (that means family, friends and some delicious food) and daylight saving time has ended.

OK, so everything was good up until the ending of daylight saving time. Going out on a limb here, I’m going to guess... Continue Reading >>

Cool savings during hot summer months

June 29, 2016   By Nicole Aiello in Reduce The Use
We’re all looking for ways to save money, even if it is just so we can spend that extra money on shoes. (I admit it. I have a closet dedicated just to shoes.) Whether you’re into collecting shoes, cars, bikes, books, figurines or those tiny little spoons at tourist attractions, you can save money on your electric bill even when it feels like 104 degrees outside.

No-cost energy saving tips:

My dad used to tell me this every day – Turn out the lights! If you’re not using them, flip the switch to save energy. Close the refrigerator. Every time the fridge is opened, up to 30 percent of cool air escapes. Unplug electronics, especially energy-hogging game consoles, when you’re not using them. Make it easy on yourself by using power strips. Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher during the summer. Anything lower and your energy bill can increase up to 5 percent per degree. When the sun shines into your windows, it's... Continue Reading >>

Follow the Energy Star to savings!

April 28, 2016   By Willard Strong in Reduce The Use


When you go shopping for a major appliance such as a refrigerator, freezer, washer or TV, or an even bigger purchase such as a heat pump, do you take the extra step to make sure they’re Energy Star qualified?

If you do, you’re among the millions of people who have embraced this federal program instituted in 1992 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Energy Star-qualified appliances use electricity more efficiently, saving you money on your power bill. Even if the Energy Star product costs a little more up front, it will typically pay for itself over time, often with dramatic results. Check out

Energy Star has an impressive track record. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, from the time Energy Star came on the national scene, “...families and businesses have realized savings of more than $362 billion on utility bills and prevented more than 2.4 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions over... Continue Reading >>

10 Ways to Save Energy this Spring

March 09, 2016   By Jessica Yourko in Reduce The Use

Use window treatments strategically in the spring to brighten your home without heating it up.

Spring is almost officially in the air and the pollen … well, it's starting to appear everywhere. The temperature is rising, but that doesn't mean your electric bill has to coincide.

Check out these 10 tips for saving energy while staying cool this spring:

Use Natural Ventilation. Open windows and doors and let the fresh air in when the temperature and humidity are ideal. Is there anything better than free cooling on a warm spring day? Use a fan. Supplement fresh air with purposefully placed fans. Fans cool people not your home, so remember to turn them off when you leave the room. Stay in the dark. Close your blinds and curtains during the warmest and sunniest part of the day. Keeping the heat out is as important as keeping the cool in. Seal it up. Add caulking or weatherstripping to seal air leaks around your windows and doors. This is an easy, simple and inexpensive way to keep the muggy heat at bay. Adjust as needed. Invest in a... Continue Reading >>