Saving money and energy use in the summer is not only great for the environment, but is also great for your family budget. With the school year almost over its time to start thinking about you and kids spending more time at home. It takes only a few simple steps to cut your energy bill by as much as 20%-50%.
Saving energy doesn’t have to be difficult and it doesn’t have to cost much money or time. It has more to do with changing a few energy-wasting habits like reminding the kids to close the door when they go outside. And where costs are involved – such as having your air conditioner checked annually by a professional – the expense can be offset by making your system more efficient and longer-lasting.
1.) Close drapes or shades during the day to block the sun.
2.) Keep cool air in by installing or checking insulation and weather stripping.
3.) Cook on the BBQ to keep cooking heat outside. When using the stove, vent heat outside with a range hood.
4.) Use a microwave instead of an oven. Microwaves use less than half the power of a conventional oven and cook food in about one-fourth the time.
5.) Dry dishes the old fashion way by hand or use the air-dry feature on dishwashers.
6.) Service air conditioners and furnace annually and change the filter regularly. Use a programmable thermostat to regulate the temperature in your home, and turn air conditioners off when no one is home.
7.) Use cold water rather than hot when showering – just kidding – when your doing the laundry. You will save about 85% of the energy it takes to wash clothes.
8.) Use washing machines, dryers, and dishwashers in the evening when Hydro rates are theoretically lower.
9.) Save energy by using the fast rather than slow spinning cycle when drying clothes, since the fast cycle removes more water.
10.) Switch to fluorescent lights that use on-third of the energy than incandescent lights.
Remember that appliances account for about 20% of your household’s energy use. A new energy-efficient refrigerator could save from $35 to $70 a year compared to models of 15 years ago. This amounts to between $525 and $1,050 during the average 15-year life of the unit.
Start your summer with these saving money steps by implement these habits into your family routine. I find a good way to get my kids into these habits is to tell them that the money we save can be used to buy more popsicles.
Have a fun and safe summer.