How to be more energy efficient working from home as temperatures cool down

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Recent chilly temperatures may make you want to crank up the heat, but not so fast.

Jeff Brooks, Duke Energy Spokesperson, offers tips on how to be more energy efficient, especially now that more people are spending more time at home.

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“As you switch to heating instead of cooling, set your thermostat to the lowest comfortable setting,” Brooks said. “That’s unique for every person, but every degree you lower it further is going to increase your savings on your bill.”

If you’re going to be away for long periods of time, Brooks says to turn it down even lower but with more people spending more of the work day at home, there are less opportunities to turn lights off and turn down the thermostat.

“That’s why it’s so important to find that lowest comfortable setting, whether it be 68, 69 whatever is comfortable for your family,” Brooks said. “Just know that every degree that you add to that heat is going to add to your energy bill and it works both ways, if you lower it a degree, you can help to save more.”

Don’t just rely on your thermostat to keep you warm when you’re working from home.

“If you’ve got a nice sunny house, open the blinds on that sunny side of the house and let that natural warmth come in,” Brooks said.

If you do decide to open those blinds, make sure they are closed at night when it gets colder or on cloudier days.

Make sure your air filters are changed regularly, Brooks says this can help cut costs by as much as 20%. Also have your heating and air system serviced periodically by a professional.

Brooks says small decisions can make a big difference. Like using the microwave instead of the stove when heating up food or taking showers instead of baths to use less hot water.

If you’re decorating for the holidays, consider switching to LED.

“Those can actually give you the same light and color for a lot less energy cost, that can help to save a lot,” Brooks said. “Making sure you put your lights on timers, so that you don’t accidentally leave them on all night.”