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Even if you plan to be away for just a few days, you can save energy at home while you travel. Just before you lock the door, walk around the house with this checklist. 

Water heater. Turn down its temperature setting, so it doesn’t keep the water hot while you’re away. 

Thermostat. Use the hold feature on your programmable thermostat and turn up the temperature on your air-conditioning system. But don’t turn off the system; without the dehumidification provided by the air conditioner, mold and mildew may develop. 

Refrigerator. Depending on the food stored in your fridge, you may be able to turn its thermostat as high as 38 degrees without risking spoilage. Food in the freezer compartment will stay frozen if the temperature is –5 degrees. 

Lights. Turn off all lights in your home, except ones plugged into timers for nighttime security. 

Electronics. Unless you’re recording something while you’re away or have a clock radio set to play during the wee hours to discourage burglars, unplug all your electronic devices: TV and cable/ satellite boxes, DVD player, microwave, digital clocks, and computer, monitor and printer. Anything with a digital display, instant-on feature or remote control will consume energy even if it’s not in use. 

For additional tips on saving energy and money at home all year long, visit the Touchstone Energy® website at


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