Tips to Save Energy

What can utility customers do to save money and energy? There are a number of simple solutions to making your home more energy efficient:

  • Adjust your thermostat settings. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates you can save as much as 10 percent a year on heating and cooling by turning your thermostat back 7 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit for eight hours a day from its normal setting.
  • Install a programmable or "smart" thermostat. These thermostats allow you to adjust your temperature through stored daily settings. Some are programmable via smartphone to allow you to change settings when you are away from home.
  • Close unused vents. Partially closing vents in unused rooms keeps air circulating but can lower the cost of heating or cooling your home. 
  • Changes furnace filters regularly. Having a clean filter will decrease the time your HVAC needs to run to heat or cool your home and it will reduce wear and tear on your furnace and AC.
  • Seal cracks and gaps. Check the weatherstripping around windows and doors and repair with caulk or window/door kits to stop drafts.
  • Focus on the sun. One of the quickest ways to save energy is to close window shades, blinds, and curtains on the sunny wide of your home during summer so your air conditioner isn't working harder than needed. In the winter, let the sun in during the day to help heat your home.
  • Eliminate wasted electricity. Turn off lights, televisions, kitchen and bath ventilation fans, and computer monitors and printers when not in use, and unplug items such as phone chargers. You can also save by using natural lighting instead of lamps, when possible.

For additional energy saving tips, review the IUB Consumer Informational brochures, or call your local utility.

Winter heating season financial assistance may be available to qualified low-income residents through the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Weatherization Assistance Program. Local community action agencies can assist with applications. In addition, Iowa's utility companies offer voluntary customer contribution funds through which customers can make a voluntary contribution on their utility bill to benefit those less able to afford high winter heating bills.

Iowa Utilities Board Informational Brochures

Links to Other Energy Efficiency Information

These links are to websites not maintained by the Iowa Utilities Board and will open in a new window:

Utility Companies Serving Iowa

These links are to websites not maintained by the Iowa Utilities Board and will open in a new window:

Energy Assistance Programs

The links below are to state and federal energy assistance programs. The websites are not maintained by the IUB:

  • Low Income Heating Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) - This is a federally funded program administered by the State of Iowa and the various local community action program (CAP) agencies. Qualified households may receive a one-time per year payment to assist with their household heating costs, regardless of heating fuel type. Application is made with the local CAP agency serving the community of residence of the applicant. Applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis at your local community action agency Monday through Friday, from November 1 through April 30 (October 1 for households with a resident 60 or older or with a disability), or as posted at the local community action office. Once an applicant is qualified, the utility is notified and the applicant is eligible for protection from disconnection of energy utility service between November 1 and April 1. The LIHEAP payment is made directly to the utility or heating fuel vendor.
  • Weatherization Assistance Program - The Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) is a federal grant program established to help reduce the heating and cooling costs for low-income residents, particularly the elderly, disabled, and children, by improving the energy efficiency of their homes.
  • Voluntary Customer Contribution Funds - Under Iowa law, energy utilities are required to operate a voluntary contribution fund where utility customers may add additional money to their monthly payment and have it deposited in a low income heating assistance fund. The money is then turned over to local social service agencies for distribution to needy low-income residents needing assistance paying their energy bills. Each gas and electric utility operates an independent fund and they go under such names as Project Helper, ICARE, ISHARE, etc. These contributions are generally recognized as tax deductible. Ask your natural gas or electric utility for details.

Printed from the website on February 05, 2023 at 3:05pm.