Simple DIY tips

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Easy ways to save on energy costs

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picture of energy-saving LED light bulb
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Regular home-efficiency maintenance

  • Clean or replace all filters in your home regularly. Dirty filters make your system work harder and run longer than necessary
  • Clean and service furnaces regularly. Oil-fired furnaces need annual maintenance, natural gas and propane furnaces should be serviced at least every two years.
  • Change furnace filters at least every 90 days (or cleaned, if you use a permanent filter)
  • Empty or bleed the air from hot water radiators once or twice a year so they can fill fully with water and work more efficiently
  • Keep air flowing by not obstructing vents or return air grilles with furniture

Preventing drafts and heating/cooling loss

  • Apply weather-stripping around older exterior doors
  • Seal cracks and penetrations on the walls, ceilings or floors to prevent air from escaping into the walls and roof
  • Seal areas of air leakage around all window and door casings, mouldings, and baseboards
  • Install foam insulation gaskets behind electrical outlet and light-switch faceplates.
  • Seal all supply ductwork with aluminum foil duct tape, approved flexible plastic tape or water-based mastic to improve comfort.
  • Make sure heating, cooling, and ventilation ducts running through basements, crawl spaces, or unheated attics are sealed and insulated.
  • Insulate hot and cold water pipes by covering the first two metres with foam sleeves. Leave a 15 cm (6-inch) clearance between insulation and vent pipes on fuel-fired water heaters.


  • Use the microwave to reheat food
  • Don't pre-rinse dishes, scrape dishes instead, let the washing do the rest
  • Use the air dry feature on a dishwasher
  • Use the dishwasher setting with the best cleaning in least amount of time
  • Allow room for air-flow in your fridge (don't overfill)
  • Keep the fridge away from heat sources such as heat vents, stove, and sun


  • Install a water-saving shower head to use less hot water (look for one that has a flow rate of less than 7.6 litres per minute)
  • Take a shower instead of bath to save on hot water costs
  • Use a low-flow toilet that uses 4.8 litres per flush to save water
  • Buy a faucet aerator to use less hot water (choose aerators that deliver 3.0 to 5.7 litres per minute of water)
  • Install a timer switch for your fan (do not leave manual fans running unattended)


  • Pre-soak stained clothes (avoid re-washing)
  • Choose high-speed or extended spin to remove maximum amount of water before drying clothes
  • Wash in warm or preferably cold water
  • Clean the lint trap in the dryer after every load to maximize air flow and efficiency
  • Avoid over-drying, use the sensor setting or time it just right
  • Don't overfill the dryer to ensure maximum airflow and reduce strain on motor
  • Sort by thickness, light items in one load, thick items in another
  • Avoid the dryer and air-dry clothes


Upgrade to ENERGY STARĀ® certified appliances and fixtures

  • Fridge (use 10% less energy*)
  • Range hood fan (use 50% less energy*)
  • Dishwasher (use 12% less energy*)
  • Washing machine: (save 25% more energy, use 33% less water*)
  • Clothes Dryer (save 20% more energy*)
  • Water heaters
  • Bathroom ventilation fan (use 50% less energy*)
  • TV (use 25% less energy*)
  • Audio/video products (use up to 70% less energy*)
  • Computer monitors (use 25% less energy*)
  • Cordless phone (use 40% less energy*)
  • Lighting fixtures (use up to 90% less energy**)
  • Ceiling fans (use 60% less energy*)

*Compared to standard models / **Compared to incandescent bulbs


  • Replace light bulbs with LED bulbs
  • Use dimmable LED bulbs and compatible dimmer switches
  • Use a smart power strip to cut power to devices not in use
  • Enable low power settings on devices to save energy and help your batteries last longer
  • Use natural light from windows instead of turning on the lights
  • Turn off lights when not in use
  • Install motion sensors to reduce your light use

Create some summer shade

  • Use awnings, blinds or drapes to keep direct rays of sunshine from overheating the room in the summer
  • Plant strategically positioned trees to help keep direct sunlight from overheating your home in the summer