Updating your home appliances, electronics and heating and cooling systems are key in making your energy bills less while reducing your carbon footprint. Most folks do not realize that when they make purchasing decisions that they are not only affecting their wallets, but also the environment. The Consumer Research Council offers an excellent guide to help buyers to understand the basics about home energy use and purchasing the proper energy efficient products.


Power plants produce the energy we need and purchase to make our homes run smooth and comfortably. These plants burn fossil fuels such as coal, fuel and gas which pollute the air we breathe with smog and acid rain. Therefore, the less energy we use, the less pollution in the air, the more comfortable and healthier we are. Pollution is attributed to diseases like respiratory disease and also global climate change.


Purchasing energy efficient products can drastically cut the amount of energy that is consumed every day. The average home causes more air pollution than the average car. A consumer who purchases energy efficient appliances and equipment can significantly reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emissions over the life time of the products – equivalent to taking a car off the road for seven years.


Energy efficiency not only reduces pollution but also saves money through your energy bill. You can reduce your energy bill by as much as 30 percent when using energy efficient products.


Look for the ENERGY STAR label. The ENERGY STAR label is given by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) to appliances and products that exceed federal energy efficiency standards. Visit the ENRGY STAR website for a list of manufacturers and retailers that carry these certified products.


When you are shopping for new appliances look for a large yellow label call the EnergyGuide. This label helps consumers compare that product’s energy efficiency to other similar models so they can make an informed decision. It is typically provided on new refrigerators, freezers, water heaters, dishwashers, washers, dryers room air conditioners, central air conditioners, heat pumps, furnaces and broilers.