Translator Disclaimers

Save money, energy, and the environment with these simple tips.

Hot Weather: Tips to Save Energy
Beat the heat and lower your bills. Keep your blinds and curtains closed during the day to block out heat, so your air conditioner works less and saves energy. 


Cook wisely. Instead of using the oven or stovetop, in the summer you can save on air conditioning costs by reducing the heat in your home and cooking outside as much as possible. Not only does this keep your home from overheating, it prevents your air conditioner from working overtime!


Mind the temperature. Use less hot water and decrease the temperature of your hot water for showers, washing machine, and dishwasher. Also, adjust the home's thermostat to 76 to 78 degrees to keep cool and avoid high electric bills.


Maintain the appliances you have. Get your appliances checked for energy efficiency annually and change your air filters regularly. Replace old appliances, including room air conditioners, with energy efficient options. This will help your home run as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible. Efficient ENERGY STAR® appliances can also reduce overall energy use and costs by up to 30%.


Recycle old appliances. Replace old, inefficient, energy-sapping appliances (refrigerator, freezer, air conditioner, oven, etc.) with high efficiency models.


Use a portable or ceiling fan to circulate the pre-cooled air in your air-conditioned home. A fan uses about 90% less energy than an air conditioner.


Adjust air conditioners and fans to a low setting. It'll take longer for the air conditioner to cool your home, but your unit will bring in steamy air at a slower rate and make you feel more comfortable.


Maintain a constant temperature in the refrigerator of 36 to 38 degrees for maximum effectiveness. The freezer should be kept at 15 degrees.


Organize the fridge wisely. Place the most frequently used items in one place so that the door will be open for a shorter period of time.


For Heat Wave Safety Information from the American Red Cross, check this Red Cross Safety Checklist.


Electricity-Saving Tips
Reset your thermostat. Lower the heating system temperature in winter and increase the temperature in summer for your central air conditioning systems. During winter, try 60 degrees at night, and 68 while you are home.

Weatherize your home in preparation for winter, and install storm windows, which reduce heat loss through windows 25 to 50%.

Wash your laundry with cold water whenever possible. To save thousands of gallons of water per year, wash full loads in the washing machine, or if you must wash a partial load, reduce the level of water. Depending on the clothes and your water hardness, many homeowners can wash clothes with cold water, using cold water detergents. Switching to cold water can save the average household more than $400 annually (electric water heaters) and more than $300 annually (gas water heaters).

Air dry your dishes. Is energy and cash drying up due to your dishwasher’s dry cycle? If there's no “off” switch for your dishwasher's drying cycle, just open the door when the cycle starts to save 15 to 50% of dishwasher energy usage and up to $25 per year on your electricity bill.

Change a light. LED light bulbs are more expensive off the shelf, but by replacing a 100-watt traditional CFL bulb with its LED equivalent, you’ll save more than $55 in electricity costs over the lifetime of each bulb. LEDs also last up to 15 times longer than your average incandescent, meaning you’ll spend less time changing bulbs and more time counting all the cash you’ve saved.

Clean out your dryer’s lint filter. It’s an easy way to save energy and cash, and reduce fire hazard. Save dryer energy usage by up to 30%, and up to $40 per year. 


Water Conservation Tips
Water conservation is the most cost-effective and environmentally sound way to reduce water demand. Here are some tips to save every drop:


Water your lawn only when it needs it. Step on your grass. If it springs back when you lift your foot, it doesn't need water. So, set your sprinklers for less frequent watering. This can save 750 to 1,500 gallons per month.


Fix leaky faucets and plumbing joints. This saves 20 gallons per day for every leak stopped.


Turn off the hose while washing your car. Use a bucket of water and a quick hose rinse at the end to save 150 gallons per wash.


Install water-saving shower heads or flow restrictors, which save 500 to 800 gallons per month.


Shorten your showers. Even a one or two-minute reduction can save up to 700 gallons per month.


Use a broom instead of a hose, to clean driveways, sidewalks, and gutters. Saves 150 gallons or more each time. At once a week, that's more than 600 gallons a month.


Don't use your toilet as an ashtray or wastebasket. Flushing less frequently saves 400 to 600 gallons per month.


Capture tap water. While you wait for hot water to come down the pipes, catch the flow in a watering can to use later on house plants or your garden, to save 200 to 300 gallons per month.


Adjust sprinklers so water only lands on your lawn or garden, where it belongs. This saves 500 gallons per month.


photo -kids washing car
Summer outdoor water use increases as people wash cars, fill pools, and water lawns and gardens.