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IN FRATERNAM MEAM
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
HOW TO SAVE MONEY NOW
Conserving energy helps save the planet, but it also saves you money. The average household spends around $1,300 a year to heat and power the home and $2,800 keeping its two cars fueld up. But prices keep rising; heating is expected to jump 50% from some homeowners this winter, and gasoline is up 25% from a year ago. Here's how to save 10% to 50% of your green by going green.

YOUR CAR
**Slow Down. Cars are designed to drive most efficiently at around 60 m.p.h; efficiency drops 7% at 23% for every 5m.p.h. over that. At gas prices that average $2.73 per gal/, say the Environmenatl Protection Agency and the Department of Energy (DOE). Gunning the engine and jamming on the brakes can lower gas mileage 5% to 33%, or as much as 90cents per gal.

** Downgrade. Most cars don't need premium gas, which costs $2.95 per gal. - 22cents more than regular.

** Tune Up. Cleaning your clogged air filters improves mileage 10%, for savings of 27cents per gal. Fixing a faulty exhaust pipe oxygen sensor which monitors the fuel-to-air ratio in your engine, can save 40%, or $1.08 per gal. Properly pumping up tires can inflate mileage 3%, or 8cents per gal.

** Go Hybrid. An SUV will glug $1,831 on average at the pump this year, and a sedan will ring up $1,453, according to the Alliance to Save Energy. Meanwhile, a hybrid will swallow as little as $589 - not to mention that tax break of up to $3,000 included in last summer's energy bill for buying new ones.

YOUR LIGHTS
The DOE asks us to sacrifice "four for the planet" - foru incandescent 100 watt bulbs, to be replaced wiuth 23-watt compact flourescnet bulbs. a 100-watt bunrs through $35.04 in energy over three years, while a 23-watt costs $8.06. A flourescent bulb costs $11 compared with 75cents for an incandescent but lasts more than 13 times as long. Total annual savings for switching four lights, counting the cost of the bulbs: $27.33.

YOUR HEAT
Heating and cooling costs the average homeowner around $600 a year, says the DOE - much more in colder regions. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, the Energy Information Administration forecasts that homeowners will pay an average of $378 more this year for heating oil, up 32% last year. Natural gaw will cost $350 more, up 48%, and heatring a home with electricity will run homeowners $38 more, up 5%. To trim 3% to 5% from your bill, set the thermostat at 78degrees this summer. Padding the attic insulation can save 30%. Switching old heating and cooling appliances for those with government backed Energy Star label could cut every bills 20%.

YOUR KITCHEN
The refrigerator alone accounts for at least 9% of a home's average usage, or $117 a year. Cover food to avoid moisture buildup, which makes the fridge work harder, and close the door quickly. As for the range, match the pot to the burner. Better yet, use the microwave instead, to cut energy two-thirds.

YOUR COMPUTER
A buck a day does'nt sound like much to kepp your PC revved for a 24/7 Google fix. But powering down to sleep mode between, say, 4pm and 10am, could save 75cents a day -- or $273.75 a year.

(Source: TIMEMAG by: Lisa Takeuchi Cullen)
posted by infraternam meam @ 12:49 PM  
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Name: infraternam meam
Home: Chicago, United States
About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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