Today is the official first day of summer! With summer comes hot temperatures and the inevitable, rising energy bills. In San Antonio and across the state, we’ve already seen high temperatures and forecasters are predicting record-breaking temperatures this summer. The overall hotter temperatures combined with kids being home from school create a higher than normal demand for energy.
In most households, summertime and kids typically means the air conditioner will run all day. The air conditioner is one of the largest users of energy, and can account for almost 58% of your monthly energy bill. And if your kids are like mine, they run out of the house and leave the door open, letting all that cool air out. And not to mention, they leave the TV, their electronics and every light in the house on while they play outside. With our TV Calculator, you can see how much of your hard earned money is being thrown away when the TV and game console are left plugged in.
Now, before the next heat wave hits, is the perfect time to get the whole family focused and involved in conserving power and reducing energy costs. By implementing our simple and inexpensive actions, your family can save energy and money all year long. These simple kid-friendly tips will help prevent your electricity bills from spoiling your summer fun.
- Lights out. Ask kids to turn lights off when they leave a room. They can turn them back on when they need to.
- Use fans. Fans keep people cool and use less electricity than the A/C.
- Unplug! Send the kids outside to play. Keep them cool with popsicles, sprinklers or even a game of water balloon toss.
- Close the fridge door. When getting a snack from the refrigerator, be sure kids are not holding the door open and letting cold air out.
- Use water wisely. Remind kids to turn the water off when brushing their teeth. Have kids take a quick 5-10 minute shower rather than a bath.
- Get rid of “phantoms”. “Phantom” energy is the electricity drawn from outlets when equipment is off but still plugged in. Unplug electronics and appliances such as televisions, game consoles, DVD/DVR players and small kitchen appliances that use electricity (and cost you money) even when they are off.
- Enjoy a no-cook meal. Instead of cooking, prepare cold meals such as salads and sandwiches. Cut down on energy usage and avoid heating up the house.
You’d be surprised that working together on achieving your energy conserving goals, is easier than it sounds. Perhaps an incentive that might get everyone on board is to use some or all of the money saved on a family outing or special treat. A good place to start is taking a look at last year’s bills and try to beat them. By signing up for Manage My Account, you have access to the last 12 months of energy bills plus some helpful energy management tools like the My Energy Portal. With a smart meter and the My Energy Portal, you can see your energy usage as recently as the day before. Sign up today, learn about our simple summer savings tips and start saving.