WASHINGTON, D.C., June 1, 2005 — High temperatures are on the way, but that doesn’t have to mean high energy bills this summer. EPA’s Energy Star program has advice on smart ways to keep cool with energy-efficient products and practices.
“Every person can make a difference this summer,” EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson said. “When we use less energy as a nation, we preserve our energy resources, save money for American families, and help protect our environment.”
The average family spends $1,500 a year on energy bills, nearly half of which goes to heating and cooling. To help protect against high energy bills, EPA encourages the following:
— Look for the Energy Star on products such as ceiling fans, programmable thermostats, and room air conditioners
— Schedule an annual checkup for your central air conditioner with a licensed contractor, and check or replace its air filter once a month.
— Replace an old or broken-down central air conditioner or heat pump with new, high efficiency equipment. Homeowners can save as much as 20 percent on annual energy costs if this new equipment is properly sized and installed, alongside properly sealed and insulated ducts.
— Seal up gaps and cracks in your home “envelope” (basement, attic, around doors and windows). Add insulation if needed. This will help reduce energy bills throughout the winter, too.
— Get informed. For more on year-round improvements to make your home more energy efficient, review the EPA’s Guide to Energy-Efficient Heating and Cooling on the Energy Star Web site or call 1-888-STAR-YES for a free copy.
EPA is working together with Energy Star partner manufacturers, national retailers, and energy efficiency organizations across the country to make it even easier to find cooling products that have earned the Energy Star. National home improvement retailers are also prepared to educate their customers about how to do proper home sealing and add insulation, to lower energy bills this summer and make homes more comfortable this winter.
If just half of all American homes were cooled with Energy Star qualified products, the change would prevent nearly 70 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to the emissions of nearly 6 million cars.
Energy Star was introduced by EPA in 1992 as a voluntary, market-based partnership to reduce air pollution through increased energy efficiency. Today, in partnership with the Department of Energy, the program offers businesses and consumers energy-efficient solutions to save energy, money and help protect our environment for future generations. More than 7,000 organizations have become Energy Star partners and are committed to improving the energy efficiency of products, homes and businesses.
For more information on helping the environment and energy-efficient cooling, visit: www.energystar.com/cooling.