Enjoy this guest article from our sister company Hot Wire Electric in Greenville, South Carolina.
It’s May! Summer will be here before you know it, and we know you'll be working hard to keep your home cool when the temperatures rise.
Interested in keeping your home comfortable without spending a small fortune? Here are some smart tips for keeping your energy bills lower as the heat sets in:
Use Air Conditioning Conservatively
Now, we’re not saying to keep your house uncomfortably warm — we know how hot summers in Greenville can get! Cooling costs can make up a large percentage of your energy bill, so you’ll want to make sure every dollar of that counts.
For example, are you away at work all day? No need to keep your air conditioning running at full blast!
Nudge the temperature up in the morning before you leave, or, better yet, invest in a programmable thermostat that will adjust the temperature automatically. You can even program it to drop the temperatures shortly before you get home so that cool, refreshing air greets you as soon as you open the door.
Hate the feeling of a stuffy room? A simple floor or ceiling fan can solve that problem by keeping the air comfortable and allowing you to keep the thermostat a few degrees higher.
Seal Doors and Windows
Don’t let all of that cooled air end up going out the window! Inspect your windows and doors for any gaps or cracks where cold air gets out and warm air may be getting in.
An inexpensive roll of weather stripping and a small bit of effort can go a long way in making your house more energy efficient.
Focus on Meals that Don't Heat Up the House
There’s a reason the holidays which revolve around oven-baked foods like pies or roast turkey occur mostly in the fall and winter — a hot oven will help warm up your kitchen, too. Unfortunately, the same is true in the summer, when a hot kitchen feels a lot less cozy and a bit more suffocating!
On hot days, avoid cooking meals that involve long baking or simmering times. That extra heat will make your cooling system have to do double duty. You’re probably in the mood for cooler fare anyway, such as a fresh salad, cold-cut sandwiches, or a quick stir-fry.
If you have an outdoor grill, take full advantage of it and cook your meat courses outdoors. Let all that heat stay outside where it belongs!
Switch to CFLs or LED Lights
CFLs and LEDs give off a lot less heat than traditional bulbs, and that heat reduction also helps prevent wasted cooling energy.
They’re also great for saving money year round. The average cost for the normal use of a single incandescent bulb is $14.00 a year. (Again, that’s per bulb.) But the average annual cost to keep a CFL or LED bulb running is $3.60 a year or less. It makes a big difference!
Want more handy tips?
If you’re looking for more ways to run a more energy-efficient home, check out some of our other posts:
- Going On Vacation? Here Are Our Top Electrical Tips
- Surge Protectors—Here’s What You Don’t Know
- Why Does My Circuit Breaker Keep Tripping?
- Electrical Safety at Christmas