During summer and winter, extreme temperatures may cause you to use more energy to keep your home comfortable – and your energy bill may show it. What can you do now to reduce your energy use and costs? BGE puts you in control of your savings with a wide variety of tips, tools and programs that help you make a real difference. Browse information by season, or for year-round savings!
Before the cold weather hits, here are some things you can do ahead of time that could reduce your energy costs:
Home heating is the single highest energy user. Make sure your heating system is running efficiently by scheduling a service check.
Water heating accounts for about 18% of home energy consumption. Reduce hot water usage by installing faucet aerators and efficient flow showerheads and adjusting your hot water heater to 120°F, or the low setting.
Insulate your water heater and hot water pipes.
Your BGE online account provides the tools you need to track your energy usage in near-real time. Compare energy usage trends, measure results of energy-saving practices, and set alerts to let you know when energy usage is trending high.
By joining the PeakRewards Electric Water Heater program, you will receive between $25 to $50 in bill credits (November through February). As a PeakRewards customer with an electric water heater, you agree to have a switch installed that will enable BGE to turn off electricity to your water heater during designated periods of peak electric demand.
Once winter is here, check out some of these ways to save:
Open window curtains during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home. Close them at night to keep heat in.
Turn off unnecessary lights and use LEDs, which can save you about $80 in electricity costs over the lifetime of each bulb.
It's simple: set your thermostat to 68◦. For each degree you lower the thermostat, you can save up to 5% on heating costs.
Before the summer heat arrives, here are some things you can do ahead of time that could reduce your energy costs:
Most of your warm weather energy expenses are directly related to cooling your home. Schedule regular maintenance to keep your system running at peak efficiency.
Your BGE online account provides the tools you need to track your energy usage in near-real time. Compare energy usage trends, measure results of energy-saving practices, and set alerts to let you know when usage is trending high.
Save about $180 per year in energy costs by using a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust your temperature settings to take advantage ofsavings when you're sleeping or not at home.
Once summer arrives, check out some of these ways to save:
Every degree above 72° F saves 2-4 percent on cooling costs.
Sunlight passing through windows heats your home and makes your A/C work harder. You can block this heat by closing your window blinds or drapes.
Turn off unnecessary lights and use LEDs, which can save you about $80 in electricity costs over theirlifetime.
Cook outdoors on a grill when possible.
You can reverse the motor and airflow direction of ENERGY STAR® certified ceiling fans to operate the fan year-round. In the summer, use the ceiling fan to produce downward airflow by running it counterclockwise to create a coolingeffect that cools the occupants of the room.
BGE schedules Energy Savings Days typically on very hot summer weekdays when both homes and businesses are using higher amounts of electricity. If you have a smart meter, you can earn $1.25 in BGE bill credits for every kilowatt-hour of electricity that you reduce your electricity usage on an Energy Savings Day (1 p.m.—7 p.m.), compared to what you would normally use.
By joining the PeakRewards Air Conditioner program, you will receive between $100 and $200 in bill credits (June through September) just for enrolling. By participating, you agree to help ease high electricity demand by allowing BGE to cycle your air conditioning on and off with a professionally installed programmable thermostat or outdoor switch.
No matter the season, you always have ways to save. Here are some things you can do anytime to lower your energy costs.
The spare refrigerator or freezer in your basement or garage could be costing you money—nearly $100 a year. Let BGE pick up your old working refrigerator or freezer and pay YOU $50 in addition to the energy savings. Sign up or call 866.898.1901 to schedule a pickup.
Add insulation to the recommended 12-15 inches (R-38) for Maryland.
It's a fast way to increase the energy efficiency of your home and help you start saving immediately. One of our energy efficiency professionals will come to your home and check the condition of its insulation, heating and air cooling system, lighting, appliances and more to identify simple ways to help you save energy and money.
Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Make it easy on yourself by using smart power strips when possible.
Switching to ENERGY STAR® certified lighting can help you save energy and money. And, with instant discounts up to $7 on select ENERGY STAR® certified LED light bulbs you can save even more! Just look at the "reduced price" sticker at a participating retailer and head to the register. Find a retailer.
Double-paned replacement windows, storm windows and storm doors create pockets of air between the inside and outside of your home and help reduce heat transfer.
Clogged and dirty filters can significantly reduce efficiency in your heating and cooling system.
Use mastic or metal-backed foil tape to seal up holes, tears and gaps.