Summer brings about sunnier weather conditions and warmer weather. Unfortunately, this welcome change in weather can soon become as nuisance when temperatures skyrocket. When the temperature rises outside, a lot of energy is used to keep the inside of the home comfortable. With the rising costs of energy, it is important to find ways to conserve energy. Here are a few tips to help you save energy this summer.
Keep the Sun Out
Keeping the sun from entering your home can help reduce your energy costs by five percent. Close all blinds, sheds and drapes during the day. Make it a point to cover the southern and western-facing windows. These windows receive the majority of the exposure to the sun's rays. Another way to reduce the sun's rays is to apply solar control film to your windows.
Use Your Appliances More Efficiently
If you do not want to decrease the use of your air conditioner, consider more efficient uses of your appliances. Run appliances like the dishwasher, dryer and washing machine when they are full. When doing your laundry, set the rinse setting on cold and the wash setting on cold or warm. You can also help conserve energy by running appliances during off peak hours. These hours are usually between 4 and 6 p.m.
Install Ceiling Fans
Ceiling fans are a good way to cool down a room and provide much needed circulation. If your home does not have fans, consider installing them. Ceiling fans are effective at cooling down a room and uses less energy than air conditioning. Using fans also lets you raise the temperature of your thermostat a few degrees, decreasing your reliance on air conditioning.
Replace Your Old Thermostats with Programmable Ones
Programmable thermostats allow you to save around 5 percent on your cooling costs for each degree you raise the thermostat. Owning one of these thermostats allows you to set the temperature according to your lifestyle. During the hours you are not home, the temperature can be raised. The thermostat can be set a few degrees lower before you return home.
Prevent Air from Escaping Your Home
Any place around the house that has cracks, holes or lack proper sealing is a source of energy waste. It allows air leaks that reduce the effectiveness of your cooling system. If your home has window air conditioning units, make sure there are no gaps between the unit and the window. If there are gaps, use weather stripping to close them.
Cook During Cooler Times of the Day
Cooking can use more energy than you expect. If you cook during the warmest parts of the day, you are going to add additional heat to an already warm house. To stay comfortable, you may lower the temperature of the thermostat. This results in an increased amount of energy usage. To avoid this, try cooking during the cooler parts of the day. You can also use alternative cooking methods. Consider using your microwave, slow cooker or grill to prepare meals.
Reduce Your Energy Waste
One of the easiest ways to conserve energy is to eliminate instances of energy waste around the home. Make it a point to turn off all lights and appliances when they are no longer in use. If possible, unplug all appliances. If the appliance is one that is not used often, plug it in when it is needed. If you use this appliance regularly, plug it into a power strip. Power strips make it easier to unplug multiple appliances.
The summer is known for nicer, warmer weather. It is also a time when energy costs are at their highest. However, there are certain steps you can take to reduce your summer energy bills. These seven easy steps will help you make it through the summer without losing tons of money.