As the heat index outside rises, the consumption of energy to cool the inside of your home likely increases too. With the help of these tips from the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) you have the ability to use energy efficiently and possibly save money on your energy bills.
Each day, most of you rely on electric, natural gas and water to run your homes. During the summer, the electric used to run air conditioning and appliances can become costly. The PUCO encourages you to take the following steps to help your household stay cool.
During the day, block the heat from the sun by closing windows, doors, and curtains.
To save money on cooling costs turn the thermostat to 80 degrees or higher when you are sleeping or away from home. Raising the temperature by 5 degrees for eight hours can reduce your cooling costs by 3-5 percent.
Look for an air conditioning unit that is ENERGY STAR approved.
Avoid creating unnecessary heat and humidity in the house during summer days. Plan to do heat and moisture-creating activities such as washing dishes, doing laundry, bathing, and cooking before noon or past 8 p.m.
Limit the amount of time you run kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans. Only run them for as long as it takes to get rid of any odors to minimize losing cool air.
If you use a window air conditioning unit, make sure it fits correctly into the window to reduce the amount of cool air lost.
Consider using a window fan, which requires as little as 1/10 the amount of energy needed to run an air conditioner.
If furniture is vents and effecting air flow the air conditioning will have to work harder to reach the desired temperature. Keep vents clear for maximum results.
Sometimes conserving energy is as simple as flipping a switch. Here are some easy ways to reduce the energy you use around the house any time of the year.
Save energy by turning off lights and appliances when you leave a room.
Use compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) bulbs. CFLs use as little as 1/4 the energy of regular incandescent light bulbs and can last 10 times as long.
Your home computer can use a considerable amount of electricity. To save energy, turn it off while not being used. Keep in mind that the computer monitor uses more energy than the CPU unit.
Set the water heater thermostat to the warm setting, or 120 degrees. If you will be away from your home, turn the thermostat down even more. This will avoid using energy to reheat the same water while you are not there.
In addition to conserving energy throughout your home, there are a few other options to help you manage utility bills. Contact the PUCO at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) for more information on ways to help with your bill.