We're Thankful for These Easy Ways to Save Energy on Turkey Day | Alliance to Save Energy
11/26/19 : Ben Somberg

We're Thankful for These Easy Ways to Save Energy on Turkey Day

This week, millions of Americans are preparing turkeys, baking pies, and getting ready to host a delicious Thanksgiving. Turkey Day can be stressful (and expensive!). But there is much to be thankful for, and we’re happy to share one thing near and dear to us: how you can save energy and money this week – and protect the climate. Here are a few steps to use energy more efficiently this Thanksgiving:

Cooking the meal. When you’re using your oven for the turkey, casseroles, and pies, try to open it only infrequently and briefly, since the temperature can drop by 25 degrees each time it’s opened. This means your oven has to use more energy to get it back to the needed temperature.

Have a gas stove? Make sure the flames are blue and not yellow, which indicates incomplete combustion and energy waste (consult the manufacturer or your gas utility if you see this). And if you’re buying a new stove this holiday season, consider an induction model, which is generally more efficient at transferring energy to a pot or pan than conventional electric or gas models.

Putting away the leftovers. One easy thing you can do to improve your refrigerator’s efficiency: dust the coils on the back once a year. And don’t worry about a refrigerator or freezer that’s full to the brim – that actually saves energy (but do try to take food in and out quickly).

No matter how much stuffing you have stuffed in there, refrigerators today use a fraction of the energy of models from several decades ago, all while storing more food and costing less to purchase (thanks, energy efficiency standards). If you’re buying a new model, purchase an ENERGY STAR-certified one – it will be even more efficient than the rest.

Keeping a bright home. Lighting accounts for about 6% of electricity use in U.S. homes. That’s significantly lower than just a few years ago, in part because folks have switched so many incandescent bulbs – which mostly turn electricity into wasted heat – to LEDs.

But when it comes to the recessed lights popular in kitchens and many living spaces, incandescents are still common. New standards were set to ensure these bulbs were more efficient starting in January, but the Trump administration undid them (the rollback has been challenged in court). If you have incandescent recessed lights, replace them with LEDs for quick cost savings.

From the Alliance family to yours, happy Thanksgiving! We’re confident you’ve got this (and your energy bill) under control.