Use a Fan for an Easy Breezy Summer
A simple fan can keep you cool and comfortable and uses far less energy than air conditioning. In fact, using a fan means the temperature of the thermostat could increase by 4 degrees without reducing your comfort level. Remember to turn fans off when you're not in the room. Fans don't actually cool the room down, they cool people down with the wind chill effect. Fans are effective as long as the air in the room is lower than your internal body temperature.
Wash in Cold Water
We're not talking about cold showers -- although that is also an effective way to stay cool! Washing your clothes in cold water can save up to 90% of the energy used by the washing machine.
Check Your Refrigerator
Save energy by keeping your fridge full of food, or at least full of containers of water. This leaves less air space that your fridge has to keep cool. Your refrigerator should be set to between 1.7 to 3.3°C. An appliance thermometer can give you an accurate measurement.
Unplug When Possible
Many of us like to relax and unplug during the summer, but we mean 'unplug' in the more literal sense. Your electronics continue to consume power whenever they are plugged in -- even if they are turned off. Try unplugging your TV, computer and all small electronics whenever you aren't using them.
When to Let the Sunshine In
Sunlight beaming in through your windows will heat up your home -- especially through south-facing windows. Try drawing the curtains or closing the blinds during the hottest peak of the day. Open the windows at night when it has cooled off, and close them in the morning to trap that cool air inside.
Light Bulb Idea
If drawing your curtains provokes you to turn on more lights, you may want to consider high-efficiency LED light bulbs. These bulbs produce half as much heat as incandescent bulbs, use 75% less energy, and last up to 50 times longer!
BentalGreenOak hopes that these tips on how to save energy in the summer help you and your family live in comfort -- for less.