Energy Saving Tips and an Energy Savings Kit

Editor’s Note:  Updated Original post from 09-04-13

My electric utility company, AEP Indiana Michigan Power company, just sent me a box of energy saving items and energy saving tips!
Energy Savings Kit OpenedI received

4 Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL) bulbs

3 faucet aerators

2 low-flow shower heads

a thermometer card for the refrigerator and freezer

a hot water temperature card.


You can see my kit in the photo.

Thanks! I know I will use the CFL bulbs. I’ve already replaced our porch light with one of the bulbs in the kit.

Energy Savings with CFL Bulbs

Compared to an incandescent bulb, a CFL bulb will use up to 75% less electricity, last up to 6 times longer, and save about $6.00 a year in electric costs.*

I got 4 CFL bulbs, so that’s like getting $24.00 in the mail.  Wait.  That’s just one year’s worth of savings. That’s $24.00 for each year that the bulb replaces an incandescent bulb.  Not bad.


Energy Savings with Low-Flow Showerheads and Aerators

Switching to one low-flow showerhead and one faucet aerator, can reduce hot water usage by 4,200 gallons per year per family. **

According to, that’s a savings of about $145.00 per year if you have an electric water heater.


Energy Savings with Refrigerator Temperature Setting

The refrigerator and freezer thermometer cards are credit card sized and are designed to be placed in the refrigerator or freezer to take a temperature reading.

Good thing I got the thermometer card.  I discovered that my refrigerator is running a couple of degrees too warm.  I turned the refrigerator control from “4” to “5” and I’ll test it again.  Hopefully it will be within the acceptable temperature range of 36 – 40 degrees F.

While letting the temperature in the refrigerator run too warm can invite food spoilage, letting the temperature run too cold can waste energy.

Mr Electricity says a refrigerator set too cold by 10 degrees can use up to 20-25% more energy.


Energy Savings with Hot Water Heater Temperature Setting

I haven’t used the hot water temperature card yet.  It is designed to be placed in a cup of your hottest tap water.  The card will tell you if the water heater temperature is set too high.

According to, lowering the temperature of the hot water heater by 10% creates a yearly energy savings of 3-5%.


Ideally, your hot water heater should be set between 110 degrees and 125 degrees F.

Maybe You Can Get Your Own Energy Kit – Here’s How

To receive the energy saving kit, I took an online energy assessment of my home.  I received a checklist of ways to reduce energy costs as well as the kit.  I live in a 110 (or is it 115?) year old farm house, so I appreciate energy savings.

If you are an AEP Indiana Michigan Power customer, you may also be eligible for the kit.  Take a look go/checkup.

I found a few other utility companies offering an energy savings kit.

Some seem similar to the one I received:

Ohio  – Ohio Edison, The Illuminating Company and Toledo Edison –

Ontario, Canada – Union Gas –

California, Los Angeles – Pace Energy –

Arizona, City of Flagstaff –

California, Oakland – East Bay Municipal –


Indiana – Indianapolis Power & Light –

Missouri – KCP&L Energy –

Ohio – Dayton Power & Light –

Ohio – First Energy –

British Columbia – BC Hydro –


This is just a small sampling of the utility companies offering some sort of energy savings kits.

Your Utility Company May Offer Rebates or Incentives for Energy Savings

In addition, many utility companies are offering rebates, coupons and incentives for purchasing or installing energy efficient appliances, such as refrigerators, stoves, air conditioning units, and furnaces.

If you are doing anything that might be considered an energy saving improvement, or purchasing any appliances, log onto your own utility company’s website and see what rebates and programs they have available.

Have you received any rebates or energy saving incentives from your utility company?  How are you saving energy?

Even small changes, such as switching types of light bulbs, can add up to worthwhile savings, even hundreds of dollars a year. Taking a few minutes to make a small change, such as trading an incandescent bulb to a CFL bulb, lowering your hot water temperature, lowering the settings on your refrigeratro, can create savings that continue adding up for years.

Even better, it helps us all to become a little less dependent on energy and gives some relief to the demands that we make on the sometimes overburdened grid.

Now that’s the Fat Dollar way!



*Source – – Light Bulbs

** Source – Minnesota CenterPoint Energy

Mr Electricity –

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