The current nationwide heat wave has more of us cranking up the A/C.
These are easy ways to stay cool and comfortable and still reduce your electricity use while you save money on your bill and help avoid a power outage.
Simply, we are using more electricity these days, to power a growing number of tech devices such as phones and tablets, our vehicles, and “smart” home security devices and even refrigerators that tell us when it’s time to buy more milk.
Tips for Reducing Electricity Use
Gadgets such as cellphones and tablet chargers pull electricity even when not in use or after they have finished charging. Don’t leave them plugged in unless they are actively recharging a device.
That includes empty cords dangling from an outlet, waiting for something to charge.
Ditto, unplug the coffee pot, microwave and anything else you can think of when not in use, for the same reason.
According to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, such “vampire” and standby power totals as much as 10% of your monthly electric bill. And who wants vampires in the house.
Recharge devices before 9am or after 9pm, when the load factor on utilities is likely to be less.
Don’t just walk away from your desktop computer or laptop, put it to sleep. You’ll extend the life of the electronic device at the same time you save electricity.
Avoid using such heat-making appliances as dishwashers and washing machines during the hottest part of the day.
Use the ‘energy saver’ setting on the dishwasher to disable the heated drying cycle and let the dishes dry with the accumulated heat inside the dishwasher.
Close the Blinds
All that sunshine, especially in rooms facing south and west, heat up the room and make your air conditioner work harder, so close the blinds or shades, at least part way.
Adjust the Thermostat to 78
Each degree below 78 will increase your energy use by 3-4%. Raise the thermostat and lower your bill.
Also, don’t leave your air conditioner running when nobody is home. Why cool an empty house?
Use fans instead of A/C. Fans use less electricity.
Clean the air conditioner filter regularly. A clogged filter makes the air conditioner work harder.
Wash it off in the bathtub, and be sure it’s completely dry before you put it back into the air conditioner.
Clean the coils yearly and set the temperature to 38°F to conserve energy effortlessly, according to Con Edison.
Use Cold Water
Take a cool shower instead of turning up the AC.
Use the cold water cycle on the washing machine.
And drink lots of cold water to replace the liquids you sweat out.
US Department of Energy
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter visited Namibia recently,
a desert country where water is precious.
Click here to read what I learned about how conserve water
This was posted originally on my NYC on the Cheap website, which was hacked, held for ransom and destroyed by the hackers in 20222. It has been revised and updated for 2023 here.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter is a journalist with 20+ years of experience as a newspaper and magazine writer, radio & TV news producer & reporter, and author of guidebooks and smartphone apps – all focusing on travel, automotive, the environment and your rights as a consumer.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter currently serves as President of the International Motor Press Assn. (IMPA), a former Board Member of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW) and a current member of the North American Travel Journalists Assn. (NATJA).
Contact me at email@example.com.
Copyright (C) Evelyn Kanter