It has been so cold this winter that often times it takes hours to get the house up to temperature. This weekend I started to think about how much energy it must be taking to warm the house at the end of the day and really....what is the point? What if I didn't have the thermostat kick in right before we got home? What if instead we found other ways to stay warm. We already use socks, sweaters and blankets when necessary but what if we just tried to get used to the normal daytime "away" setting rather than having the higher "home" temperature turn on.
Our Eco Challenge this month is to stop turning the heat up to the normal "home" setting, which is 3 degrees F higher than the "away" temperature. Studies have shown that reducing your homes temperature by 3 degrees F will result in 8% energy savings and 325kg carbon emissions reduction. This is pretty significant for such a small temperature difference.
If the outside temperatures continue to hover between -20C and -40C then this will be a hard challenge but hopefully nothing a little creativity can't solve. And by creativity I mean sitting in well insulated forts, playing full body Wii and drinking more tea than normal.
To demonstrate the difference 3 degrees can make on energy usage and relate that to environmental impact and cost.
Want to participate? Stop increasing your thermostat to your "home" setting and measure its impact. Use the hashtag #JnJEcoChallenge
Have you ever turned down the heat and noticed a difference? What do you have your "away" and "home" temperatures set to?
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photo credit: James Britton via photopin cc