Tips: Eco-Friendly Ways to Put Those Extra Hours of Daylight to Good Use This Spring

Last Sunday (March 11) was the beginning of daylight-saving time, and Americans will gain an extra 21 hours of evening daylight. Since energy conservation is the driving force for the early time change, Lowe's is encouraging homeowners to use these hours wisely with some simple, green projects that would make Mother Nature smile.

"Making changes to conserve energy around the home actually takes less time than you might think," said Michael Chenard, director of environmental affairs at Lowe's. "It's often small projects the entire family will enjoy tackling together, and with 21 extra hours of evening daylight, it's hard to find an excuse not to."

Here are some affordable projects that every homeowner can tackle in one hour or less:

  • Install a dimmer switch -- the bathroom is a great place in the home that many people forget about when it comes to installing dimmer switches. Who likes bright light in the morning, anyway? Dimming lights can save big on electricity bills.
  • Prep the lawn and garden beds for spring with all-organic products.
  • Install solar powered landscape lights.
  • Install an ENERGY STAR approved ceiling fan, which uses up to 75 percent less energy.
  • Replace the thermostat with a programmable one and enjoy up to 33 percent year-round energy cost savings.
  • Replace standard light bulbs with compact florescent ones -- it's an easy way the entire family can help save energy.
  • Replace single-pane windows with ENERGY STAR qualified models to keep cooling costs down this spring and summer.

This article originally appeared in the 03/01/2007 issue of Environmental Protection.

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