Energy Tips

Save energy - every bit counts

There are many low- or no-cost things you can do to reduce the amount of electricity you use. While any single action may not result in dramatic savings, over time, they can add up. And when everyone takes a few steps, it can make a substantial difference in overall demand. Here are just a few things to try.

For Your Home

Lower Your Thermostat

You’ll use 3% to 5% less energy for every degree you lower your thermostat in winter. Try setting it at 68 degrees or lower, and turn it down to 55 when you go away.

Embrace The Circulation

Make sure there’s nothing blocking your vents. Your heater or air conditioner must work harder and longer if the air can’t circulate properly, wasting energy and costing you money.

Switch & Save Light Bulbs

Switch to LED or compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs. They last longer, and consume far less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs.

Wash Full Loads Of Laundry

Wash only full loads of laundry – your machine uses the same amount of energy no matter how big or small your load is.

Pack The Dishwasher

The same goes for the dishwasher: fill it up before you run it. Fewer loads mean you’ll use less energy. Set it to Air Dry to save even more.

Close The Refrigerator

Every time you open the fridge, its temperature drops by two to five degrees, and for every 30 seconds the door stays open, it takes up to a half-hour to get back to the right temperature.

Fix Dripping Faucets

Hot water faucets that drip can waste more than 200 gallons of water a year – plus all the energy it takes to heat it.

Convert Showerheads

Low-flow showerheads can cut your hot water use in half. You won’t feel any difference in the water pressure, and you'll use much less energy.

For more tips and information, visit the Department of Energy’s Energy Saver website. To learn about programs designed to make your home more efficient and earn cash rebates, visit Duke Energy Smart Saver.

For Your Business

Lower The Thermostat

In winter, try lowering the thermostat a degree or two. You’ll use 3% to 5% less energy for every degree and most people won’t even notice the change.

Stop Air Leaks

Air leaks in your building's envelope also leak energy, so you need to find those gaps and seal them. Many can be sealed with simple caulking.


Be sure your walls, roofs and floors are adequately insulated. Adding roof insulation is about the most cost-effective conservation measure you can make.

Light Bulbs: Switch & Save

When you switch to compact fluorescent (CFL) or even better, LED bulbs, the energy savings can be significant – plus they’ll last much longer than incandescents.


Computers, monitors, printers and copiers use energy even when they’re asleep. Encourage your employees to shut everything off before they leave the office.


Spaces used only for a few hours a day don’t need to be lit for the entire workday. Motion-detecting occupancy sensors in these spaces save energy, extend the life of your lighting equipment and reduce maintenance costs.

For more information and tips specific to your type of business, visit the ENERGY STAR page for Small Business Resources. To learn about programs, rebates and incentives to make your business more energy efficient, visit Duke Energy.

Get Involved

The success of the Blue Horizons Project depends on the support and participation of the people and businesses of Buncombe County. We ask that you adopt energy efficiency as normal in your home, promote it in your workplace and donate and volunteer with organizations that help others do the same.