Whether you're trying to make your home more comfortable, improve your company's bottom line, or make your school a greener place, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has the tools and resources you need. If every American household took the actions on the next few pages, we could save $18 billion on our energy bills annually and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of 18 million cars. Join with EPA and be part of the solution. ENERGY STAR® can help.
Things You Can Do at Home
Make a Plan
Visit the ENERGY STAR website and use EPA's online tools to help you find out how to make your home more energy efficient. Whether you do it yourself or hire a professional, recommendations from ENERGY STAR can reduce your utility bills by up to 30 percent, make you more comfortable, and protect our environment.
Change a Light
The EPA suggests replace existing lighting with ENERGY STAR qualified compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs, lamps, ceiling fans, and fixtures. Also look for the ENERGY STAR on decorative light strings for festive occasions.
Make Saving Energy Entertaining
Seal and Insulate
According to the EPA use caulk, spray foam, and weather stripping to seal your home's outer walls, ceilings, windows, doors, and floors. Add insulation to your attic to help keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Seal leaks and repair gaps in your home's duct system to improve efficiency.
Heat and Cool Efficiently
The EPA says to change your air filter at least once every three months, have your heating and cooling systems tuned-up by a professional annually, and install and properly use a programmable thermostat. When replacing heating or cooling equipment, choose models that have earned the ENERGY STAR and ask your contractor if they follow the ENERGY STAR Quality Installation guidelines.
Always Look for the Star
The EPA says to choose products that have earned the ENERGY STAR label. While offering all the features you want, these products also meet strict guidelines to help you save money and protect our environment. Products with the ENERGY STAR label are available in more than 60 product categories-- and even new homes can earn the ENERGY STAR.
Find out if Home Performance with ENERGY STAR is available in your area, says the EPA. Through this program, specially-trained contractors will evaluate your home using state-of-the-art equipment and provide recommendations to improve your home's energy efficiency and comfort. They can also help you get the work done right!
Things You Can Do at Work
Give It a Rest
The EPA says to use the ENERGY STAR power management settings on your computer and monitor so they power down when not in use. Also use a power strip as a central "turn off" point to completely disconnect equipment from the power supply. Don't forget to make these changes in your home office, too.
The EPA says to unplug electronics such as cell phones and laptops once they are charged. Adapters plugged into outlets use energy even when they are not charging.
Light Up Your Work Life
Replace the light bulb in your desk lamp with an ENERGY STAR qualified bulb, which will last up to 10 times longer and uses 75 percent less energy, according to the EPA. Turn off the lights when you leave, especially at the end of the day.
Let It Flow
The EPA suggests keeping air vents clear of paper, files, and office supplies. It takes as much as 25 percent more energy to deliver air into the workspace if vents are blocked.
Create a green team with your co-workers, help build support for energy efficiency in your workplace, and reduce office waste, says the EPA.
Talk to the Boss
Set Up Your Office for Savings
Things You Can Do in Your Community
Take the Pledge
Include Your Family
The EPA says to encourage your parents, siblings, and spouse to shop at local retailers and grocery stores that have earned the ENERGY STAR. Tell your family and friends to stay at an ENERGY STAR labeled hotel the next time they travel. Go to energystar.gov/buildings for a full list.
Spread the Word
Be a Leader
Contact your local government officials and ask them to reduce their energy use by partnering with ENERGY STAR suggests the EPA. Help your homeowners association organize an Earth Day event centered around ways to save energy. Visit energystar.gov/leaders.
Teach Future Energy-Savers
The EPA suggests getting involved in a local school or community organization to teach kids about how they can help protect the environment by saving energy. Encourage your child's school to join ENERGY STAR.
Add it Up Find out what your household's carbon footprint is with EPA's greenhouse gas emissions calculator. Visit epa.gov/climatechange.