This summer, have fun in the sun, but keep your cool indoors.
Here are some tips on how to be smart with your power and cut down on your electricity use and costs.
Cool air in, hot air out - Lock out hot air during the day and open windows to let cooler air in during the evenings.
Blinds up, temperature down – Using blinds and drapes can block up to 65% of the heat that would otherwise come in through your windows. Angling horizontal blinds with the edge tilted upwards will block heat from entering while allowing light in.
Spin that fan – A ceiling fan is a great energy-efficient alternative to an air conditioner. To use a fan more effectively, hang it at least 2.5 meters above the floor and ensure it is rotating counter-clockwise. The air-flow from this creates a wind-chill effect that makes you feel cooler.
A cool home – Time the use of major appliances like ovens and washing machines during cooler times of the day. Turn off all unnecessary electrical equipment – computers, stereos and televisions – and limit the use of most electronics to early mornings and evenings when the air is cooler.
Make laundry a breeze – Take advantage of the warm dry weather to hang your laundry to dry. Hanging clothes to dry instead of using a dryer is a great way to keep things cool and save money. If you have to use the dryer, throw in a dry towel to a wet load of laundry to cut down the drying time.
Food for thought – Eat cold food on a hot day to save the need for using the oven or stovetop. Or use the barbecue and prevent unnecessary heat in your home from the oven.
Keep your cool – Keep cool this summer by taking shorter, cooler showers. You can save up to $15 a year per person by taking one minute off your usual showering time. For a family of four, that’s $60 of savings!
Vacation tip – If you’re going out of town, remember that a full fridge is a happy fridge. Having an empty fridge requires more energy to cool the empty spaces. Try filling old containers with water to improve your fridge’s efficiency. The same rule applies to your freezer!
Timing is everything – If you’re going to be away, use a timer for interior and exterior lights so that your lights turn on and off at a pre-determined time. And don’t forget to unplug phone chargers and other appliances to diminish “phantom” load. (Electronics and other devices, like phone chargers, continues to draw electricity even if they’re not in use.)
Join the Team – Join Team Power Smart and get energy-saving advice, and take advantage of exclusive rebates and offers. Commit to cutting your electricity consumption by 10 per cent over the year, and you can earn a $75 reward. For details, visit www.bchydro.com.