Warm Weather Energy Tips

1. Keep the sun out. On a hot day, blinds and other window coverings should be closed to prevent the heat from entering your house. This will mean less electricity used to power fans and air conditioners.

2. If you have an air conditioner, make sure it is the right size for the area that it is cooling. Maintain your air conditioner; change or clean the filters often during the months of use. If your air conditioner is on, keep windows and doors closed.

3. If you have a central air conditioner, make sure your furnace filters are also clean. Keep all air vents clean and unobstructed. Remove vents from walls or floors and vacuum the vents on both sides.

4. If installing an air conditioner, place the machine outside in a shaded area.

5. Only use a portable air conditioner when cooling a room or when there are people in that room.

6. Use portable fans and install ceiling fans and only use them when people are in the rooms.

7. Use your barbecue as a cook top and as an oven to prevent heating up your kitchen.

8. Use small appliances like an electric frypan, microwave oven or toaster oven instead of the oven. They use less energy and will not heat your kitchen as much.

9. If you do need to use your oven, only pre-heat as long as necessary, and try to cook more than one dish at a time or cook one right after the other. Do not open the oven door to check if your dish is done; keep the oven window clean so you can look inside.

10. Use a pressure cooker to cook dishes that otherwise would require long cooking. A pressure cooker cooks very fast and so uses less energy.

11. Use a slow cooker for long-cooking dishes instead of your oven. It uses less electricity and will not heat up your kitchen as much.

12. Use photoelectric lighting on the outside of your house or change the timers to only come on when it gets dark. Darkness comes a lot later in the summer.

13. Add insulation to attic and walls to increase the total R value of your house.

14. Install a programmable thermostat. Reduce the use of your air conditioner when no one is home or during cooler nights. Set the temperature to go down 5*F (3*C) for times when you are sleeping or away from home. Set to your desired temperature for the house before you get up or arrive back home.

15. Keep curtains and furniture from blocking heating registers and cold air return vents.

16. Vacuum heating registers and cold air return vents. Also vacuum as far as you can on the inside.

17. Make sure all registers and vents are open. If necessary, replace any that are damaged and will not open and shut.

18. Circulate chilled air using electric ceiling fans.

19. When not using a fireplace, keep the chimney damper closed. 

20. Use energy-efficient, low-wattage bulbs such as LED bulbs.

21. Use a timer or photoelectric cell to turn on lights at dusk.

22. Have all gas-burning appliances checked by a qualified technician once a year.

23. Reduce hot water use and reduce the natural gas or electricity needed to heat the water.

 a. Install a high efficiency water heater
 b. Lower the temperature on the hot water tank to 120 or 130°F. A drop in 10 degrees can give savings of 3-5%
 c. Install reduced-flow shower heads in bathrooms
 d. Keep hot showers as short as possible
 e. Use a high efficiency washing machine which uses less water
 f. Wash clothes in cold water whenever possible.

24. Clean the dryer lint filter after every use.

Last updated on July 17, 2018