Skip To Content

    Author Archives: RISMedia's Content Solutions Websitefeed Feed

    • How to Save Electricity When You’re Away

      How to Save Electricity When You’re Away

      When planning to leave your home for vacation, there's a lot to think about: finding someone to feed the cats, holding your mail at the post office, packing your bags, and more. But how about lowering your electric bills when you're out of town?  The following 5 tips courtesy of Duke Energy can help shave dollars off your bill. Keep in mind that savings will vary depending on the length of your trip, your home size, your home's insulation and your  heating system.

      1. If you have a programmable thermostat, use the "vacation" mode. If you have a manual unit, adjusting your thermostat just a few degrees cooler will have a significant impact. A change of just three degrees for 24 hours a day can save 30 percent on your heating costs. Also, set the fan to "auto," not "on." Leaving the fan on all the time costs up to $25 a month. If the forecast is for mild weather, consider turning the system off completely.

      2. Turn off your electric water heater at your breaker if you plan to leave home for a few days. Most models will reheat the water to the set temperature in about an hour. A large amount of the cost of running a water heater is due to the "standby" losses. Water heaters are among the top three energy using appliances in your home.

      3. Most of us empty our refrigerators before heading out of town, but did you know a fully stocked refrigerator keeps cold better than an empty one? Keep the fridge and freezer full and tightly packed, and the cold items will keep one another cold. It doesn't even have to be food; you can use water containers or ice trays. Conserve even more energy by adjusting the thermostats on your refrigerator and freezer to higher settings; 38°F for the refrigerator and 5°F for the freezer. For trips lasting four weeks or more, consider emptying your refrigerator completely and unplugging it.

      4. Unplug small electrical equipment such as radios, DVD players or TVs when not in use. Electronic appliances can act like energy vampires, sucking power even when they are not in use. This is called phantom loads. Your coffee maker, cable box, game console, laptop computer and even your rechargeable toothbrushes are a few examples of these phantom power users.  

      5. Make sure fans and lights are turned off. For security lights, consider using a timer. And, switch bulbs to LEDs or CFLs to save even more.Source: duke-energy.com/save

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 6 Quick Bathroom Cleaning Tips

      6 Quick Bathroom Cleaning Tips

      Keeping your bathroom sanitary doesn’t have to be a chore. With the right cleaning techniques, you can enjoy a sparkling bathroom without spending all day cleaning. Here are six cleaning tips for a fresh bathroom:

      1. Shine your mirror
      Your bathroom mirror can get pretty grimy. Thankfully, it’s easy to restore it to its former glory. Here’s how:
      • Place rubbing alcohol on a cotton pad and rub away any stuck-on gunk.
      • Spray the entire mirror with a glass cleaner and use a microfiber cloth to wipe away any debris.
      2. Renew your bathroom floor
      Your bathroom floors receive a lot of traffic. Use your vacuum to remove hair, dirt and other debris. Use your favorite cleaning solution to clean the nooks and crannies of your bathroom. Sponges are perfect for scrubbing dirty or stained shower tiles.

      3. Scrub tile grout
      Over time, grout can change from white to an off-putting grey or brown. Vinegar and baking soda are the perfect stain-fighting combination to clean grout. The baking soda will bubble up and eat away at the accumulated soap scum. Rinse away your solution and enjoy your clean grout.

      4. Whiten your toilet
      Cleaning the toilet does not have to be a tough job. In fact, it can be one of the easiest parts of cleaning your bathroom. Pour a cup of white vinegar into the toilet bowl and allow it to sit for at least 10 minutes. The acid in the vinegar will help neutralize mineral deposits. When the vinegar has done its job, flush it away and use a toilet brush to remove any remaining hard water stains.

      5. Remove tub debris
      Daily use of your tub probably means you’re washing down dirt and debris from your body. Depending on the type of tub you have, debris will start to show up on the floor. To clean out your tub:
      • Spray the entire surface with an antibacterial cleaner. The cleaner will need time to work, so take a break or do something else while it sets in.
      • After 10 to 15 minutes, simply use the showerhead to rinse the walls and tub surface. Then, use a clean microfiber cloth to dry everything thoroughly.Depending on what washed down your tub, there’s a chance you won’t be able to remove your deep-set stains or marks. If you notice some unsightly stains, resurface your tub for a new look.
      6. Rinse the sink
      Renew your sink by soaking paper towels in bleach and letting them sit for 30 minutes. Rinse the sink with running water to flush away any bleach and enjoy your sparkling new sink.

      Note: Avoid bleach on colored porcelain sinks. Bleaching could cause colors to fade. If you have a colored porcelain sink, use a mild liquid detergent or vinegar-based solution instead.

      Bathroom cleaning can be quick, simple and take under an hour if you have the right tools and methods. Instead of spending money on a professional cleaner, use these tips to get your bathroom in shape.

      Source: RISMedia's Housecall

      Published with permission from RISMedia.