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Some Common Myths about Energy Saving

June 30 2008

Myth #1 – All fluorescent lighting is bad

Today’s compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) use up to 75 percent less energy than traditional incandescent lighting and, on average, have a life span of up to five years (source: ENERGY STAR). Next time you’re replacing lighting around the home, remember that incandescent lighting has changed very little since the 1800’s, and that one CFL bulb lasts ten times longer than incandescent bulbs of equivalent wattage.Energy Saving Myths

Myth #2 – Installing foam gaskets around electrical outlets and light switches will reduce air leakage

Test measurements conducted by the US Department of Energy show that less than two percent of air leakage in a home is through electrical wall outlets. However the big criminals in this regard are one-pane windows, with a thin sheet of glass, which serves to heat the outside. Or doors left open, particularly in the fall and spring months.

Myth #3 – Leaving lights, computers, ‘sleeping’ TVs, game consoles and DVD/video players on is better than switching them on and off.

This myth has been around since the time that electricity was first harnessed, at the turn of the last century. The small surge of power that occurs with ‘some’ devices when they are turned on is miniscule compared to the power wasted by leaving them on when not in use. And here’s another surprise for you. Even when you’ve turned them ‘off,’ a lot of appliances continue to draw power – ‘phantom power’ as it were – to keep the device in ‘instant-on’ mode or to power lights and LED readouts on the devices. Pull their plugs when not in use, or connect to power bars and switch those off when the devices aren’t in use.

Others-Myths – Cleaning refrigerator coils deliver major energy savings and duct tape placed around joints will keep in the heat (or cold).

Not so. The air in most homes is not so dusty that the heat exchanged through the refrigerator back coils is impeded. And duct tape, while strong, exchanges heat and cold easily.