1.Change incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent ones (CFLs). You can take the light bulb with you when you change residences or leave them for the next resident. A 15-watt CFL provides the same amount of light as a 60-watt incandescent light bulb but it uses one-fourth the electricity. CFLs are initially more expensive to purchase, but they last 6-10 times longer and can save at least $30 in electric bills over the lifespan of each bulb. You can reduce lighting energy bills by 50% by replacing only 25% of your light bulbs with CFLs. If every household did this, it would prevent the release of greenhouse gases to the same extent as removing 8 million cars from the road for a year.
2. Place drapes over windows. Twenty five percent of a home’s heat can escape through leaky windows. Non-insulated drapes cut heat loss from windows by one-third; insulated ones cut heat loss by half.
3. Seal windows from leaks by replacing caulk or installing weather stripping. Inexpensive kits that seal warped or single glazed windows can be purchased at home improvement stores for approximately $3-10 a window.
4. Replace HVAC filters. Your landlord should do this regularly or you can replace them more often than the landlord might. Using a clean filter helps to maintain efficiency and reduce heat and air conditioning losses. Energy production for heating and cooling accounts for half a billion tons of carbon dioxide emissions in the United States, 24% of the country’s sulfur dioxide emissions, and 12% of the nitrogen oxides emissions. Carbon dioxide is a significant contributor to global warming, sulfur dioxide contributes to acid rain, and nitrogen oxides can lead to the production of ground level ozone, high levels of which are harmful to health.
5. Install low-flow aerator faucets and shower heads. These will save 2.5 gallons every minute and can be purchased for a nominal price at local home improvement stores. Save the old fixture and put it back on, if desired, when moving.
6. Reduce water used by toilets. Old toilets, installed prior to 1992, use an average of 3 gallons per flush, whereas new toilets use only 1-1.5 gallons. Instead of installing new toilets, purchase blockers from a home improvement store that go in the toilet tank and reduce the amount of water used for each flush.
I although want to open discussion on one of the topics. Number 6 by reducing the amount of water used with each flush you make it harder for some things to flush. Is that a generally agreed upon phenomena?
If it is, then does it really serve to switch over all of the toilets in the house or should you leave one with "Full Power Flushing" and only use it when you expect to need it?
I think that the 1.5 gallon flushes are great because most of the time people urinate and then flush so overall it probably saves a lot of water. It is almost like there needs to be toilets with two flush control handles. One with a 0.5 gallon flush and the other with three gallons.