Bullfrog Power’s Conservation Tips

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Bullfrog Power’s

Conservation Tips Easy ways to conserve energy & save money

“There is nothing more important for our planet and for humanity than getting off our addiction to fossil fuels, and Bullfrog Power is a pioneer and innovator in this realm. I am a proud and loyal Bullfrog Power customer and I am grateful for all they do to make it so easy to create a more sustainable future.� Tara Maclean bullfrogpowered artist

Why conserve? Along with choosing green energy, conservation is one of the most powerful ways to fight climate change, reduce air pollution, and work towards a cleaner energy future. But knowing where—and how—to reduce your energy consumption can seem a little overwhelming at times. This booklet will help you discover all the simple things you can do right away and in the long term. Whether you’re adjusting the temperature on your hot water heater or pulling the plug on that extra fridge in the basement, every bit counts. Conservation initiatives are also the perfect complement to your green energy purchase. They give you the opportunity to further green your home, reduce your energy bills (helping to offset your Bullfrog premium), and help create a cleaner world. Thanks for doing your part to make our planet a shade greener! Your friends at Bullfrog Power

Many of the tips below are sourced from WWF-Canada and the David Suzuki Foundation. Thanks to these bullfrogpowered organizations for sharing their ideas!

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Make energy saving a family affair Get your kids involved by having them name three things they’ve done that day to save energy.

Energy use around

your home Short term: 1. Pick up an energy use monitor. • Energy use monitors display the electricity cost and carbon emissions of your appliances. Want to know which of your appliances is consuming the most electricity? A monitor can help you find the culprit.

2. Make energy saving a family affair. • A little dinner table education about energy reduction can go a long way. Get your kids involved by having them name three things they’ve done that day to save energy, from turning off the gaming console as soon as they’re done using it to turning off the lights when leaving a room.

3. Be water wise.

Longer term:

• Public water systems require a lot of energy to purify and distribute water to households—so try not to keep taps running unnecessarily. You’ll reduce your water usage as well as the amount of energy needed to treat water.

1. LED your holidays. • Did you know that LED lights are about 85% more efficient than standard incandescent lights? Make the switch and you’ll have the brightest of holiday seasons—for you and the environment.

2. Timing is everything. • Install a motion detector to reduce unnecessary lighting, and add dimmers for when you’re watching TV and don’t require those extra watts. bullfrogpower.com | Energy conservation tips

Insulation & heating Short term: 1. Don’t get in hot water. • Consider lowering the temperature of your hot water heater to 54°C. Consult the owner’s manual for your water heater to find out how to adjust the temperature.

2. Change your furnace filter frequently. • Cleaning or replacing your furnace’s air filter on a regular basis will improve heat and air flow.

3. Keep your furnace in the clear. • Make sure household objects don’t obstruct your furnace’s vents and block the flow of heat.

4. Seal it up. • Pick up insulation kits and weather stripping to seal gaps around windows and doors. And don’t forget to bring out the caulking gun to seal any wall cracks and gaps.

5. Open and shut. • Get your blinds and drapes working for you. Leave them open during the day to allow sunlight to heat your home, and then close them up at night to minimize your heat loss. In the summer, do the opposite to keep the heat out and the cool air in.

Longer term: 1. Insulate your existing water heater—or consider a tankless one. • Save up to 15% on water heating costs by simply adding an insulating cover to your water heater. You can find hot water heater jackets at your hardware store. While you’re at it, add insulating covers to any exposed pipes for even greater savings.

2. Clear it out. • Draining your hot water heater by about 4.5 litres (1 gallon) every two to three months from the hot water heater drain tap will remove sediment and mineral buildup from the bottom of the tank. Sediment and mineral buildup can block heat transfer, so removing them will increase your hot water heater’s efficiency.

3. Keep cool. • Consider installing a programmable thermostat. Sleeping in a cooler house is more comfortable—for both you and your pocketbook. In the winter, set your thermostat to 21°C during the day and 17°C at night. When summer hits, install a ceiling fan to keep you cool and leave your thermostat around 26°C.

4. Shut it. • Prevent cold drafts from entering your home by removing your window air conditioner in the winter and keeping the window shut. If you’re unable to remove the unit, consider purchasing a durable indoor or outdoor air conditioner cover.

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“It is very gratifying to live in a bullfrogpowered home. We work hard to bring attention to why our world needs to take action on climate change right now. It makes us feel good that our own personal actions are part of the solution in the meantime.� Frank and Lisa Horvat bullfrogpowered customers

In the

kitchen Short term: 1. Stock up the fridge. • Did you know that full fridges and freezers use less energy? Fill up your fridge so it can recover its internal temperature more quickly after it’s opened. Just remember to leave enough space around food items to allow circulation of cold air.

2. Clean the coils.

Longer term:

• When housekeeping, don’t forget to clean the coils on the back of your fridge by brushing off or vacuuming the dust. The coils help dissipate the heat from the fridge. When they’re covered in dust, they work less efficiently.

1. Check your seal. • Is the seal on your fridge door airtight? Find out with this simple test. Close the door over a piece of paper so that the paper is half in and half out. If you’re able to pull the paper out easily, the hinge may need adjustment or the seal may need replacing.

2. Retire that second fridge. • Older refrigerators are much less energy efficient than newer ones. If you’ve moved the old fridge down to the basement, consider retiring it completely to save energy.

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Cleaning Short term: 1. Wash smart. • Use your washing machine or dishwasher only when you have a full load, and select economy programmes and/or the lowest possible temperature.

2. Hang it out. • Clothes dryers are one of the most power-intensive appliances in the average home. Drying your clothes on a clothesline, either inside or outside, uses no energy at all! If you must use a dryer, spin your clothes in the washing machine first to reduce drying time.

3. Clean dryer ducts. • Have you noticed that your dryer takes longer to dry your clothes than when you first bought it? Consider cleaning out the exhaust pipe that vents the hot air outside. Over time, the vent can get clogged with lint, reducing the efficiency of your dryer.

Longer term: 1. Be an (Energy) Star. • Choose Energy Star-rated appliances that save water and electricity. Consider this: an Energy Star-certified washing machine uses up to 33% less water and 25% less energy than regular washers.

Electronics Short term: 1. Unplug it. • Electronics that have a clock, digital timer, remote control, or standby mode are sucking energy when they’re not in use. This energy is called phantom electricity—and it’s scary how much of it exists. If you’re not using these appliances, unplug them.

2. Get a charge.

Longer term:

• Set up a more efficient charging station by plugging all your chargers into a power bar. Keep it off until you actually need to charge your electronics.

1. Love your laptop. • Consider purchasing a laptop instead of a desktop. After all, a laptop consumes five times less electricity than a desktop. And don’t forget to enable the power management function on your computer—contrary to popular belief, screen savers don’t save energy.

2. Get vocal. • Whenever you’re shopping for electronics of any kind, make sure you tell sales staff you’re looking for energy efficiency. When consumers start demanding it, companies will start supplying it.

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Taking a trip? 1. Fly direct or take the train if possible. Less time spent in the air means fewer emissions. 2. Consider offsetting your travel-related emissions with Less Less is ranked as the highest quality offset provider by the David Suzuki Foundation and the Pembina Institute. If you’re interested in lessening your environmental footprint for your next trip, visit less.ca for more information.

In the car Short term: 1. Drive less. • Aim to reduce your driving as much as possible. You’ll save money, fight climate change, and keep our air clean.

2. Carpool. • If you have to drive, why not arrange a carpool? Every seat filled can result in one less car on the road.

3. Be gentle.

Longer term:

• When you accelerate rapidly and then brake hard, you’re wearing out your brakes and increasing your fuel consumption.

1. Buy an electric vehicle. • Not only are electric vehicles environmentally friendly, they’re often cheaper than gasoline-powered cars once you factor in fuel and maintenance costs.

2. Remove your roof rack. • If you don’t need it, take it off. The roof rack creates drag and reduces the fuel efficiency of your car.

3. Maintain your tires. • Correct tire pressure will maximize your car’s efficiency. And remember to remove your snow tires at the end of winter.

4. Use a block heater in the winter. • You’ll reduce the time it takes to warm up your car, and reduce your fuel usage.

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Add some shade Planting trees will help shade your home from the sun. Targeted landscaping, including tall trees, can shade your home from the hot summer sun—while still letting in the winter warmth.

Renovating 1. Recycle and reclaim. • Whenever possible, opt for surplus, recycled, or reclaimed building materials. You can also visit antique shops or secondhand stores to look for items like cabinets, doors, and more.

2. Audit yourself. • A home energy audit will show you how to maximize the energy efficiency of your home. To find a qualified energy advisor in your area, visit the Natural Resources Canada site here.

3. Add some shade. • Planting trees will help shade your home from the sun. Targeted landscaping, including tall trees, can shade your home from the hot summer sun—while still letting in the winter warmth.

4. Out with the old. • Purchasing triple-glazed windows may cost more up front, but they’ll increase your energy cost savings and make your home more comfortable. Look for the Energy Star label to ensure your new windows will keep the heat in during those cold winter months.

5. Insulate your home. • Make sure your attic and basement have sufficient insulation. One economical option is to include loose-fill insulation in your attic. Spray foam insulation can be added around windows and doorframes. You can also improve the insulation in your walls, but this can be a large job and will require a professional contractor.

6. Upgrade your furnace. • If your house has an old furnace, replacing it with a more efficient one may be one of the best ways to improve your home’s energy savings.

bullfrogpower.com | Energy conservation tips

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