Thursday, May 30, 2013

Thrifty Thursday: Turn off the Air and put on a fan

I wrote a post awhile back about turning down the heat and putting on a sweater but now it is summer and the opposite holds true.  Turn off the air and put on a fan!!! 

In the Northern Virginia area, there is a really short period of time that you can do this but sadly it is also during pollen seasoning.  Of course, if you have been reading my blog, you know that our air conditioning is broken so we aren't doing this by choice!!  We have gotten the opportunity to open up the windows and run our ceiling fan instead of the air conditioning to cool our house.  We do get a little life out of the air conditioner a day so we use them at night to try to cool off the house when it doesn't have to work as hard.  Here is hoping that it saves a few dollars on the electric bill at the end of the trial.

There are a ton of numbers out there and I am not sure what actual numbers are true in "real life" yet but I know that it takes a lot less energy to run a ceiling fan than it takes to run our 3 ton air conditioner (yup, I now know the size of our air conditioner...if you don't consider yourself lucky because it means that you haven't priced them to replace).  The difference in pricing is hundreds of dollars per month!!

Of course, it is also good to do a few other things to help with the heat in the summertime:

1.  Close the curtains:  Don't let the sun shine into the house because it will also let in the heat.

2.  Use a dehumidifier:  Taking the humidity out of the air is helpful in cooling the air and making it feel even cooler.  We have ours in the basement and it drains right into the sump pump so that nothing needs to be emptied (because then you don't have to remember to empty it because most models shut off when they are full).

3.  Run the oven, dryer, dishwasher, and anything else that makes heat at night: This is the biggest challenge for me because I love to bake in the morning- the exact time that you aren't supposed to so I have been skipping baking all together.  Remember to use the crock pot and other devices that don't put off as much heat.  Choose the toaster oven instead of the full sized oven!!  I do run the dryer and dishwasher at night so that it is already cooler outside and the air conditioner isn't working as hard.

If you are looking for ways to cut a little out of the energy budget, remember to unplug anything not in use and try a few summer saving tips!!  Hope they help!  Let me know if you have any others that I should add to what we are doing this summer :)

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