School is out and the kids are home. Most of us see an increase in our electric bill during the summer, simply because our home is now occupied 24/7 this time of year.
Here are some simple tips to keep the electricity use to a minimum:
1. Lights out: Introduce the practice of turning lights out as you leave a room. If you are going to be in a room, open the curtains and utilize the natural light. If a light is left on in a room, make the last occupant stop what they are doing and go back to turn it off.
2. Turn off/unplug the gadgets: Once electronic devices are charged, unplug them. Turn off items not in use, such as DVD players, game consoles and kitchen appliances. Many of these will still use energy even if they are not being used!
3. Avoid peak times: Turn the air conditioner up, avoid doing laundry and cook dinner late in the evening to avoid using energy during peak times. Check with your electric company; many have incentives for doing this, and it can make a noticeable difference on your bill!
4. Don’t forget outside items: This is a category that we tend to forget about (out of sight, out of mind!). If the pool is clean, turn off the filter. Items that are charging, such as ride-on toys or electric weed-eaters, need to be unplugged when charged.
5. Review your bill: Look for times when energy usage peaks in your home. Discuss this with your children, so they may get a better understanding of how much electricity costs.
By using these practices, you can not only teach your children about saving energy but also save quite a bit on your electric bill. That savings can be used for more important things — like ice cream!