Do it Yourself -- Save Energy, Save Money: Introduction

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Congratulations on making one of the smartest investments of your life — accessing this web site and this guide in particular. Smart, because you’ll find hundreds of web pages of energy-saving and money-saving ideas you can put to work today.

When it comes to saving money, there are lots of areas where the situation is out of your control. If you need a gallon of milk, a postage stamp, or a ticket to a baseball game, you pretty much have to pay the going rate. You could drink less milk, deliver your letter by hand, or buy a cheaper seat, but in all those cases there’s a downside.

But the energy zone is an area where you can save money and wind up with an upside. With a small initial investment of time or money, there are hundreds of ways you can lower your energy bills and reap side benefits to boot. A com pact fluorescent light-bulb doesn’t only save you $36 over its lifetime, it lasts 5 to 10 times as long. A well-insulated house isn’t only cheaper to heat, it’s quieter and more comfortable. Fixing a drippy faucet leads to both a lower utility bill and a better night’s sleep. and on a broader scale, saving energy helps save natural resources and the environment.

Let’s not completely sugarcoat things. Sometimes there are tradeoffs. Using a programmable thermostat may mean a cooler trip to the kitchen for that midnight snack. Installing insulation means putting up with the scratchy stuff for a day or two. Purchasing a high-efficiency furnace may mean not recouping your initial additional investment for five years or more. But, for the most part, these are small prices to pay for a lower utility bill and a cleaner world.

This guide isn’t just filled with ideas for saving energy; it’s filled with simple step-by-step instructions on how to implement those ideas. Whether it’s tuning-up an air conditioner, weather-stripping a window, or installing a storm door, Save Energy, Save Money! will give you the hands-on information you need to do just what the title promises.

So read on and save!

Introduction

1: The Big Picture

Special Section: 40 Great Energy-Saving Tips

2: Insulation

3: Heating Season

4: Cooling Season

5: Windows and Doors

Special Section: Understanding Replacement Windows

6: Smarter Lighting

7: Conserving Water

Special Section: Your Automobile Gas Mileage

8: Appliances and Water Heaters

9 :Remodeling

10: Resources and Links for learning more about energy efficiency

Next: The Big Picture: An 8-step energy savings strategy

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