General Power Saving Tips

Denim Deb

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I already have all my wood for the winter. Since I have electric heat, this saves me so much on my electric bill.

While I have a chest freezer, I hate it. I know that you lose some of the cold w/an upright. But I figure w/the amount I lose trying to find stuff in the freezer, and then having stuff go bad because I don't know it's there, it probably pretty much evens things out.
 

Britesea

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I made up some large bags from fabric remants that are color coded: Yellow for chicken, Magenta for beef, Green for veggies, etc. I try to keep my packages in the appropriate bags. It simplifies searching for things as I only have to look in one section of the freezer.
 

sumi

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My parents, or rather my dad, had a brilliant idea to save electricity. He got a local plumber/handyman to set up a very basic solar water heater for their house. The water got fed into a length of 2/3 inch black plastic pipe, which laid coiled up on the house's roof. If I have to guess, I'd say they used about 100 feet of pipe. In their home town where summer temperatures of 130*F is not unheard off, the water in that pipe got hot enough to burn you quite badly if you were not careful. I remember one day making a cup of coffee from the water straight off the roof and it was hot enough... They also bought and installed an electric water heater, which served mostly as a holding tank for the hot water, which got drained from the roof pipe into the heater, which kept it warm, since it was insulated. During the warmer months they never turned that water heater on and they had plenty hot water for bathing, washing dishes etc. The expense to the get the system set-up was not very high and the money saved in electricity was enormous in the long run.

If that is not an option, turning the heater off for a few hours every day, or when you're not home for extended periods, like when on vacation or out for a weekend, can also save a lot of money. I remember as a teen, we only switched ours on for about 3 hours in the evenings, so we could bath and do the dishes. That 3 hours was enough.
 

WendyJ

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@sumi did they have a way to bi-pass the water from the solar section for the winter or did it not get that cold there? I would be worried about it freezing up in winter here.
 

sumi

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Yes, they did. The plumber installed a few taps allowing us to drain the pipe water into the heater, bypass the heater and drain it into the garden (when the water was cold, of course!), empty the heater when the water in it was cold, so we can replace it with "roof water" etc.

Our winters here are VERY mild compared to the States', with a hard overnight frost about as bad as it gets in their hometown. The pipes he used on the roof were of the thick plastic type that farmers use outdoors. It's tough as metal and lasts forever.
 

goatgurl

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@DenimDeb i know what you mean about a chest type freezer and loosing things, being a little vertically challenged i would have to stand on a stool and go head first into the dang thing so when it died i got an upright and i can find things easier but now every time i open the door i worry about that cold downward rush of air. i know, i know you couldn't make me happy if you hung me with a new rope.
 

Britesea

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:yuckyuck
In our family we say she would complain in Heaven that the glare off those streets of gold gave her a headache, lol
 

Denim Deb

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@goatgurl, I wonder if you could put some of that plastic like they use in cold storage rooms and walk in freezers to help block the cold air. They make them for doorways, so you could probably cut it down to size.
 

Britesea

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you wouldn't need to block off the whole doorway with that plastic-- a piece that covered maybe the bottom couple of feet would probably be enough-- you could have it attached to the sides with velcro so you could remove it if you needed to get into the bottom shelves.
 

goatgurl

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hmmm, worth trying anyway. i'll let youall know if it works
 
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