EPA has more tips for keep cool when it's hot
August 7, 2007
This summer, don't let sweltering temperatures and sky-high energy bills cause a sweat. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, by taking a few simple energy-efficient steps, residents can beat the heat while keeping more money in their pockets.
The average family spends $1,900 a year on energy bills, nearly half of which goes to heating and cooling. During summer's hot and humid weather, the demand for electricity reach high load levels, and the EPA is asking homeowners and employers to make a special effort to reduce electricity consumption. Following are specific steps that everyone can take to help conserve energy.
• Replace incandescent light bulbs with Energy Star qualified compact fluorescent light bulbs. These bulbs use 75 percent less energy than regular bulbs.
• Remind kids to shut off the light when they leave a room and the computer when they're finished.
• Use room fans to reduce the need for air conditioning. Circulating air can make a somewhat higher temperature feel more comfortable so the air conditioning can be set three to five degrees higher.
• Keep the thermostat at a constant, comfortable level. Lowering the thermostat below the desired temperature will not cool the home faster.
• Run appliances such as ovens, washing machines, dryers and dishwashers in the early morning or evening hours when it's cooler outside.
• Keep shades, blinds and curtains closed. About 40 percent of unwanted heat comes from the windows.
• Place window air conditioning units on the shady side of the home to avoid overworking the unit in the hot daytime sun.
• Buy Energy Star products because they operate more efficiently, save energy and ehlp protect the environment.