If you aren’t ready to throw some solar panels on the roof and ditch your power company, but would like to save some money by living a greener life, here are some tips to help you get started.
- Make sure your thermostat is set properly. Lowering the default settings during the summer and at night could save you almost $200 a year, according to Energy Star. More tips at energystar.gov.
- Insulate your hot water heater. To see if you need to insulate, touch your heater. If it is warm to the touch, it needs additional insulation. You will lower your water heating costs with this single step.
- Cut down on car trips and run your errands on your bike or on foot. Rusty on two wheels? Check out the Westford Wheelers.
- Rip up some lawn and plant a vegetable and flower garden. You will save a ton of money on food, and delight your children as they watch things grow over the summer. The Westford Garden Club can help.
- The Westford Recycling Committee and the Westford Energy Committee is always looking for help on ideas to help save taxpayers money through environmental efficiency.
- Check out Sustainable Westford and the Westford Farmers' Market. Locally grown produce takes less fuel to get to your dinner table.
- Have your kids make their friends’ birthday cards and wrapping paper.
- Check out Swap.com, a “valet service” that collects your unwanted clothes, gear, media, toys and décor and sells them on its site. You set the prices and you can take your windfall in cash or stuff.
- Replace your old light bulbs with LED bulbs. They last 15 times longer and use 75 percent less energy. Find stores with bulbs at energystar.gov.
Do you have other tips? Tell us in the comments.