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Save a Kilowatt With Kate brings you many ways to save money and energy at home. This month, I’m answering questions about the latest in energy gadgets and projects, and debunking common myths:

What is your favorite energy-related gadget that you use on a regular basis?

In my house, it’s hard to add another chore to the list, so I prefer energy-efficient appliances that don’t require a lot of thought or additional attention. LED bulbs are a convenient option for lighting, since it’s all about the combination of ease of use with energy savings. Once you install them, there’s nothing more you need to do with them for years! Wi-Fi and programmable thermostats are also a favorite. I can control the temperature of my home when I’m on the go, which is a big help during the winter when trying to avoid coming home to a chilly house or helping to prevent frozen pipes. 

What do you think is the biggest myth or misconception about energy efficiency?

The biggest misconception is that you need to complete one big project, like installing solar panels or new windows, in order to immediately impact your usage and start saving. If you want to make sure your home is running as efficiently as possible, you need to first learn how it uses energy.  

That’s why I encourage residents to take advantage of Home Performance with ENERGY STAR®, which provides a comprehensive assessment of a home’s energy usage, recommendations for cost-effective, energy efficiency improvements, as well as assistance with installing the improvements and available financing options.

What is the easiest project to complete during the winter or spring season?

One of the most important things you can do to conserve energy and stay warm in the winter is to reduce air leaks in your house. While extensive air sealing should be done by a qualified contractor, you can insert weather stripping around windows and doors that will help cut down on drafts. If a home is poorly sealed or under insulated during the winter, you will feel it. Adding insulation any time of year will help you prepare for the intense temperatures we endure during the cold and hot months. 

When warmer weather finally rolls around, don’t forget that spring cleaning can help you reduce energy use! For instance, changing air conditioning filters and clearing dust off the back and from underneath your refrigerator will help ensure these are working as efficiently as possible. 

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Any other questions? We have answers. Log in to your Eversource account at Eversource.com to access your Energy Savings Plan. This free online tool allows you to find custom energy-saving solutions for your home.

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Kate Peters is Eversource's energy efficiency spokesperson. If you're a member of the media and would like to arrange an interview with Kate, please contact a member of the Media Relations team.