Each season of the year has energy costs of their own.  Winter with the furnace, summer with the A/C, you get the idea, so we wanted to give you some tips to reduce energy consumption year-round so you can feel good about using your HVAC systems.

Fridge

  • If you have an extra refrigerator somewhere in your house, unplug it when it isn’t being used.  Those otterpops will refreeze for summer next year!  But it could save you a whole bunch of money in the meantime.
  • Is your fridge older than 1990?  At that age, it’s probably basically part of the family, however, if you want to be kind to your wallet, you might want to consider upgrading to a newer model, or better yet, an ENERGY STAR qualified model.  Your old fridge will understand and your wallet will thank you.
  • Say you get that newer model, set it to cool between 30 and 42 degrees F for maximum cooling efficiency.  But say you really splurged and got that ENERGY STAR model, then go ahead a flip that power-save switch.
  • Fill up that freezer! Good because then you have food for when you don’t feel like cooking, better because a full freezer is easier to cool than an empty one.  Don’t need a lot of food in your freezer? Consider freezing water bottles.
  • Make sure your fridge isn’t leaking, you can tell if there’s a cool breeze or condensation on the outside.  Same thing as opening your front door when your HVAC unit is on, you don’t want to let to cool air out, or the warm air in.
  • Last of all, make sure the coils in the back are clean, vacuum them or wipe them down.  A clean appliance works more efficiently.

Dishwasher

  • Use the economy setting.  Reduces water use and electricity use.
  • Don’t start the dishwasher unless it’s full.  No need to waste the space.  If there’s a dish you want cleaned ASAP, try hand washing.  It’ll get the job done, I promise you.
  • Air dry your dishes.  It’ll reduce energy consumption, and in the summer months, will keep your house cooler.

Oven

  • If heating up leftovers, microwave and toaster oven work just as well and use less energy.  And in my personal opinion, heats it up much faster.
  • When you do have to use the oven, keep the door closed.  Keeping the heat in there will make sure the food cooks faster and therefore uses less energy.  Also will reduce the risk of heating your home to a higher temperature than comfortable.
  • Copper pans use heat more efficiently, so consider upgrading to copper pots and pans.  A general rule for all pots and pans, try to use a burner that is the same size as the pot or pan.  Small pan on a large burner wastes a lot of heat.
  • Along with the previous point, the lids to the pots and pans should also have a nice fit.  The tight seal will make sure the heat is kept inside and thus a more efficient cooking process.
  • When food is almost done cooking, turn off the oven or burner and use the remaining heat to finish up the cooking.  Maximizes the heat consumption.
  • Last of all, be sure to turn off fans.  I usually keep it on until the smoke dissipates, but hey, we aren’t all bad cooks out there, so be kind to your wallet and turn it off once you’re done cooking.

So this is just a short guide to reduce energy consumption.  We want to make you, your wallet and the environment very happy!  Stay tuned to see tips on other home appliances, lights, heating, cooling, and other home accessories.  To find out when we’ll be posting the next blogs, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Advertisements