Reduce Your Energy Use This Winter

MGE has simple strategies to help you save energy by tackling large energy users. 

From pumpkin spice everything and streets glittering with holiday lights to cozy sweaters and joyful gatherings, winter can be festive but frigid in Wisconsin! MGE’s Energy Experts can help you manage your energy use during the snowy season.  

Home heating tips 

You can save an estimated 10% on your heating by turning your thermostat down 10 degrees for eight hours a day. Visit for recommended thermostat settings.  

Our Energy Experts also recommend having your heating system inspected and tuned up by an HVAC professional every other year. In addition to helping ensure your system is running efficiently, an HVAC pro can help you understand how your specific heating system works and how best to operate and maintain it.  

And, be sure to set your furnace fan to “auto” instead of “on.” This is one of the biggest steps you can take to be energy efficient at home.  

Water heating tips 

Water heating is typically the second-highest home energy user for most households in Wisconsin. Be sure to set your water heater between 120 and 125 degrees, and if you’re going on a trip, turn your gas water heater control down to the “vacation” or “pilot” setting when gone for two or more days. If you have an electric model, turn it off at the breaker.  

If possible, always wash full loads in your dishwasher and clothes washer. Clothes should be washed in cold water using cold-water detergents. Hot water is only needed for greasy or heavily soiled items.  

You also can help reduce water heating costs by taking short showers instead of baths and replacing showerheads made before 1994. Look for a style that uses 2.0 gallons per minute (GPM) or less. 

Free energy expert advice 

MGE can provide tips and answer your questions about saving energy at home any time of year! Email our Energy Experts at or call the MGE Home Energy Line at (608) 252-7117. 

published: Nov-25-2022