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Great ideas for saving energy and money
From adjusting in your behavior to replacing old equipment, there are endless ways you can decrease both your energy bills and your environmental impact.
Shift your behavior
Whether you own or rent your home, there are plenty of ways to shift your behavior to save energy and money, all while maintaining your home’s comfort.
Manage your thermostat
You probably already turn off the lights when you leave home, but do you also adjust your thermostat? According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can save as much as 10% on your heating and cooling bills each year simply by turning your thermostat back 7–10°F from its normal setting for eight hours a day.
Whether you’re in the heat of summer or the depths of a polar vortex, use your curtains strategically to keep your home comfortable. Look for thermal insulated curtains to prevent air from entering or escaping through your window.
- In the summer, close curtains during the day to block some of the sun’s heat — especially windows on the south and east sides of your home.
- In the winter, open curtains during the day to usher in the sun’s warmth. Make sure to close them at night to reduce heat loss.
Heat a smaller area to stay warmer and save energy! You can close heating vents in unused rooms or, if you have a zoned home, turn off the heat in some areas.
Replace traditional light bulbs with LEDs to save on lighting energy use. Think about which lights you use most often and replace those bulbs first!
Put a lid on it
Put a lid on pots and pans when cooking to save energy by heating food faster.
Hang it out to dry
Reduce your machine dryer energy use by hanging laundry out to dry — you can hang laundry outside when the weather is nice or indoors year-round.
Learn more ways to save money and energy at home!
Don’t know where to start?
Sign up for a Home Energy Squad® visit to jump-start your savings and learn more about how to make your home more efficient.
Invest in your home
Investing in your home will help you save more energy and money, long term. From an in-home energy audit to equipment rebates and appliance recycling, there are plenty of opportunities through your utility to put some cash back in your pocket.
Sign-up for a Home Energy Squad® visit
Does your home have drafty doors, an old thermostat, or inefficient incandescent light bulbs? The Home Energy Squad can fix these things and more, quickly and affordably.
Choose from two great options: a Home Energy Squad visit ($70), or a Home Energy Squad Enhanced ($100) visit. Free visits are available for income-qualified households.
Applying for home efficiency rebates
From upgrading old equipment to pursuing innovative efficiency technologies, there are plenty of rebates available to help with upfront costs.
Earn substantial rebates for replacing old, inefficient heating equipment or investing in state-of-the-art air source heat pumps.
In the heat of summer, don’t keep burning through money with inefficient AC — use cooling system rebates to upgrade your old unit instead.
Find a qualified insulation contractor to ensure the job is done right, and earn a rebate. Proper insulation will help your family save all year long!
Bonus: A Home Energy Squad visit includes an assessment of insulation levels and quotes for insulation from local qualified contractors.
Coordinate heating and cooling to your schedule and enjoy instant rebates!
Bonus: Enroll your qualifying smart thermostat in AC Rewards and you can take advantage of a bill credit every year for voluntarily cutting back on AC use during periods of peak demand.
Refrigerator and freezer recycling
Have an old fridge in your basement or garage? Sign up for refrigerator recycling and a qualified contractor will take it away for free — and give you a $35 rebate.
Water heating rebates
Did you know that water heaters can account for up to half of a home’s energy consumption? When you replace your old water heater with a high-efficiency model, you can earn a great rebate and save money on hot water every day.
Go green with renewables
Whether you’re a renter supporting green energy or a homeowner making a long-term investment in solar, there are renewable options available in Northfield to fit your needs.
Renewable energy subscription programs
There are two great options to support renewable energy without installing solar panels on the roof or a wind turbine on your property. Check out these subscription programs that allow you to make sure that the electricity you consume comes from renewable sources.
Choose to source up to 100% of your home’s monthly electricity use from locally produced wind energy with Xcel Energy’s Windsource® program. The cost ranges from $1 to $10 per month, depending on subscription amount and your home’s electricity use. This program is a great way for renters and those in apartments to buy renewable electricity.
Community solar garden subscriptions
A community solar garden is a solar power plant that provides electricity to more than one household. Members of the community can have the benefits of solar power without installing solar panels on their property.
On-site solar installations (e.g., rooftop solar)
With your own solar installation, you can generate some or all of the electricity your home uses. You may even be able to sell what your home doesn’t need to your electric utility!
Not sure which program is a good fit?
Visit Xcel Energy renewable energy options
Click on “Which program is right for me?” and answer a few anonymous questions to learn more.
Rent and save
Renters can save on energy bills too! As a renter, not only can you encourage your landlord to sign up for an energy audit or assessment, but you can also shift your behavior to reduce bills.
Encourage your landlord to get an energy audit
An energy audit is a great way for your landlord to identify energy saving opportunities for their rental property, which will help you save money on energy bills.
If you live in a 1–4 unit dwelling
Ask your landlord to sign up for a Home Energy Squad® visit. At the visit, energy experts will install energy- and cost-saving measures, including LED bulbs, door and attic hatch weather stripping, and water heater insulation. With permission from the landlord, tenants can also sign up individually.
Free visits available for income-qualified households and tenants. Ask Home Energy Squad about free visits when scheduling.
To learn more:
Home Energy Squad
If you live in an apartment building with more than 5 units and has a common entrance
Encourage your property manager to sign up for a free whole-building audit through the Multi-Family Building Efficiency program. In addition to a free audit, participants receive free installations including screw-in LED lights in common areas and residential units, high-efficiency showerheads and faucet aerators.
Encourage your landlord to contact:
Multi-family Energy Solutions
Save by shifting your behavior
There are plenty of opportunities to save with small changes in your behavior — and you don’t have to spend a penny. Get started with the ideas in our "Shift your behavior" section.