BALTIMORE — October is National Energy Awareness Month and Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) reminds customers that taking steps to save energy and money now will pay off this winter.
In fact, during two recent recycling drop-off events hosted by BGE, customers recycled close to 500 inefficient room air conditioning units and dehumidifiers, earning a $25 reward for each unit recycled and helping to save nearly 150,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity. As a reminder, customers who schedule pick-ups of old, working refrigerators or freezers to be recycled are also eligible to recycle one working room air conditioning unit or dehumidifier at the same time.
By following a few simple tips and making a few easy energy efficiency improvements, customers could save 20 percent or more on their winter heating bills:
•Maintain Heating Systems. Most cold weather energy expenses are related to heating your home. Schedule service for your heating system to find out what maintenance is required to keep your system operating efficiently.
•Lower Water Heating Costs. Water heating accounts for about 18 percent of the energy consumed in your home. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting of 120 degrees Fahrenheit and save.
•Adjust the Temperature. When you are at home and awake, set your thermostat to as low a setting as is comfortable for you. When you are asleep or out of the house, turn your thermostat back 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours and save approximately 10 percent a year on your heating bills. A programmable thermostat can make it easy to automatically adjust temperature settings. If you have a heat pump, maintain a moderate setting or use a programmable thermostat specially designed for use with heat pumps.
•Take Advantage of the Sun’s Heat. Open curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home, and then close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.
•My Account Online Tools. Your BGE online account contains tools and detailed energy usage information. By tracking your energy usage, reviewing usage trends, and discovering the results of energy-saving practices, you can manage your energy more efficiently. Log onto BGE.com/MyAccount to get started.
Looking for customized solutions to help you save energy and money? BGE offers rebates for these and other home efficiency improvements through the BGE Smart Energy Savers Program®.
The BGE Smart Energy Savers Program is a suite of programs that enable customers to control energy use, leading to more efficient use of electricity and lowering energy bills. The programs have provided $464 million in rebates to BGE customers and have also helped nearly 1.9 million residential and business participants save more than 2.8 million MWh of electricity. Collectively, the programs help contain the cost of energy and improve reliability by reducing peak demand and slowing the growth in energy consumption. Energy-saving solutions are available to renters, homeowners, large and small business customers, nonprofits and institutional customers. More information can be found at BGESmartEnergy.com. These programs support the EmPOWER Maryland Energy Efficiency Act.