Cool Summer Savings Options
As the seasons change, so do our budgets! Temperatures rise, heating costs become cooling costs, and we assume that the cost to beat the heat is a necessary and unavoidable expense. Here at MSU Federal Credit Union, we’ve come up with some cool summer savings tips to help you stay frosty when things are heating up!
1. Adjust the thermostat
Setting your thermostat for as high as you can comfortably stand will reduce the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, lowering your overall cooling bill. According to energy.gov, if you use air conditioning and also have a ceiling fan, using them together will allow you to raise the thermostat setting by about 4° without a noticeable difference in comfort.
2. Speaking of fans…
If you don’t have air conditioning, (or are trying to avoid using it) fans can help circulate air and naturally cool your home by creating a wind chill effect. When temperatures go down at night, you can set up a cross-breeze by opening windows at opposite ends of your home. Positioning a fan to blow the warm daytime air out of one of these windows will help pull the cooler night air in through the other. If you are using a fan during the day to circulate air in the room you’re in, remember to turn it off when you leave the room – fans cool people, not rooms.
3. Appliance science!
The appliances in your home can help you beat the heat, or add to it! Aside from kitchen appliances that are supposed to get hot, there are numerous sources of unintended heat in your home!
If possible, avoid indoor cooking – the stove, oven, and even the microwave can add unwanted warmth to your home. If you have a grill, cooking outdoors is both enjoyable and delicious!
Only wash full loads of laundry or dishes! Running these appliances less often will avoid the heat they generate when operating normally. You can further prevent higher home temperatures by letting dishes air dry, and drying your laundry outside.
Home lighting, computers, and televisions are also culprits that raise the temperature in your home. Finding a good book can keep you entertained while keeping your home cool.
A dehumidifier is another helpful appliance to prevent unwanted warmth. As mentioned in another of our articles on winter savings, moist air holds heat. This can help save heating costs in the winter, but can increase cooling costs in the summer! Keeping your home free of excess humidity will also keep your home free of excess heat!
Your refrigerator’s sole purpose is to keep things cool, so why not let it keep you cool too? Keep a jug or carafe of water in the fridge, and you’ll have a cold beverage whenever you want! If you have the space in your fridge, you can also keep a washcloth or bedsheets cool to help lower your body temperature. Learn your body’s cooling spots (like your neck and wrists versus your forehead) and apply the chilled washcloth to them. Put the cooled sheets on before going to bed, and you’ll stay cool through the night!