As a municipal-owned utility Danville Utilities benefits from energy efficient customers. We urge our customers to conserve energy and save money on utility bills every way they can. The less energy you use, the happier we are! Use our Ways to Save pages to find helpful tips on how to become more energy efficient and conserve water as well.
- Danville Utilities Home$ave - Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program!
- Danville Utilities Custom$ave - Commercial and Industrial Energy Efficiency Rebate Program
- Rooftop Solar - Is it right for my home?
- Tips to Save Energy
- Tips to Save Water
- Time of Use Rate - Rewards you with lower rates for using energy during low-demand (off-peak) periods, which typically occur at night, on weekends and during holidays.
A great resource for evaluating your home's energy use is ENERGY STAR's Home Energy Yardstick. If you have 5 minutes and your utility bills are handy, find out if your home’s energy performance measures up. To use the Yardstick, you will need to enter some common information about your home such as age, square footage, number of occupants and utility bill totals for a consecutive 12-month period (one year).Visit ENERGY STAR Home Energy Yardstick
Many air leaks are easy to find because they are easy to feel - like those around windows, doors, and through electrical outlets. But hidden air leaks in attics, basements, and around chimneys are often more significant sources of energy loss. Consider addressing these big leaks first because they will have a greater impact on improving your comfort and reducing your utility bills. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)For more information, visit ENERGY STAR Home Sealing
Yes. Ducts that move air to and from a forced air furnace, central air conditioner (CAC), or heat pump are often big energy wasters. Sealing and insulating ducts can improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by as much as 20%. Focus first on sealing ducts that run through the attic, crawlspace, or unheated basement.For more information visit ENERGY STAR Home Sealing
Yes, you can add the new insulation on top of old insulation, unless it is wet. If it is wet or appears that the insulation has previously been wet, you should look for the cause and repair the problem to prevent a recurrence. Remove any wet insulation. Wet insulation can lead to mold, mildew, or even the rotting of your ceiling or roof rafters.View the DOE's Insulation Fact Sheet
A quick way to see if you need more insulation is to look across your attic. If your insulation is level with or below the joists, you probably need to add more insulation (but remember to seal the air leaks before you insulate). If you can’t see the joists because the insulation is above them, then you probably have enough and adding more will likely not be cost effective.
The recommended level for most attics is to insulate to R-38 (or about 12 -15 inches, depending on the insulation type). R-Value is a measure of the insulation’s ability to resist heat flow. The higher the R-Value, the better the thermal performance.
Even if you have plenty of insulation, it may not be performing well due to cold air leaking through the insulation into the house. So make sure to look for signs of air leaks and seal them up as you find them. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)For more information ENERGY STAR Home Sealing
Installing an insulating blanket is a good idea if your water heater’s storage tank has a low insulating R-value (i.e., less that R-24). If you don't know your water heater tank's R-value, touch it. A tank that's warm to the touch needs additional insulation. Adding an insulating blanket to your water heater can reduce standby heat losses by 25% - 45% and save you around 4% - 9% in water heating costs. Insulating your water heater tank is simple and inexpensive. Choose a blanket with an insulating value of at least R-8. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)
CFL stands for compact fluorescent lamp, and it is a small fluorescent light bulb that uses 75% less energy than a traditional incandescent bulb and can be screwed into a regular light socket. A CFL typically can last for about 8,000 hours. In comparison, an ordinary light bulb lasts only about 900 hours.
Switching from traditional light bulbs to CFLs is an effective, accessible change every American can make right now to reduce energy use at home and prevent greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change. Lighting accounts for close to 20% of the average home’s electric bill. Changing to CFLs costs more than incandescent bulbs upfront but provides a quick return on investment. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)
Turning a CFL on and off frequently can shorten its life. However, because of the vast diversity of products and different usages, it is difficult to determine exactly how much.
To take full advantage of the energy savings and long life of CFLs, it is best to use them in light fixtures you use the most and are on for at least 15 minutes at a time. Good locations include outdoor light fixtures, indoor fixtures in the living room, family room, kitchen, bedroom, recreation room, etc. This is not to say you should leave your lights on all day if you use CFLs. It is still a good habit to turn the lights off when you leave the room for an extended period of time. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)
LED stands for light-emitting diode. LEDs are small light sources that become illuminated by the movement of electrons through a semiconductor material. LED lights typically consume 75% less energy than conventional incandescent lights. More from ENERGY STAR...
ENERGY STAR is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy helping us all save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products and practices.
In 1992 the EPA introduced ENERGY STAR as a voluntary labeling program designed to identify and promote energy-efficient products to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Computers and monitors were the first labeled products. The ENERGY STAR label is now on over 60 product categories including major appliances, office equipment, lighting, and home electronics. EPA has also extended the label to cover new homes and commercial and industrial buildings. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)
Yes. When buying an appliance, remember that it has two price tags: what you pay to take it home and what you pay for the energy and water it uses. ENERGY STAR qualified appliances incorporate advanced technologies that use 10–50% less energy and water than standard models. The money you save on your utility bills can more than make up for the cost of a more expensive but more efficient ENERGY STAR model.
Yes. Unplug your chargers when not in use. Most cell phone chargers, camera chargers, battery chargers, power adapters, etc. are drawing the same amount of energy when not in use (and even when not connected to an end-use product).
To work properly and efficiently, thermostats should be located away from any sources of cold or heat. Install your unit on an interior wall, away from heating or cooling vents and other sources of heat or drafts (doorways, windows, A/C vents, radiators/heating vents, skylights, direct sunlight or bright lamps). It is worth moving a thermostat if it’s in a bad spot, especially if you’re doing any renovations. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)
It is a common misconception that it takes more energy to heat up a cold house than it does to keep a house warm all the time. Turning down the thermostat will always save energy, as will turning up the air conditioner temperature setting. Heat moves from hot to cold, and the rate of heat transfer increases with greater temperature differences between inside and out. Smaller temperature differences between your house and outside generally means you’ll lose less heat (or air conditioning) from inside the house to the outside. Therefore, you will save energy by only heating or cooling as much as necessary, for the occupants and time of day.
If your concern is comfort, or having to wait for your house to heat up or cool down after you get home, invest in a programmable thermostat – it can begin to heat or cool your home 30-60 minutes before you get home, so the temperature is just right when you arrive. (source: ENERGYSTAR.gov)