Summer Savings: Energy Tips for your Home

Summer Savings: Energy Tips for your Home

Posted 05/29/2014

4944311883_96dd428667_zSummer in the Valley is on its way and with it, the Arizona heat. While blasting the AC during these sizzling months sounds like a great plan, it may not be so great for your energy use. From the air conditioner to the dishwasher, a few adjustments can make a huge difference on your home’s efficiency and the impact on the environment. The grass will always be greener on your side with a little inspiration from Maracay Homes' Living Smart® program and these energy-saving tips.   

Pull The Plug
Turning the thermostat up when you leave the house is the first rule when it comes to saving energy, but what about other appliances? Gadgets like coffeemakers and your computer may not be in use while you're away with summer fun activities, but they can still use energy. Unplug the unnecessary appliances that you don't need all the time to reduce your use and save you more. 

(Filter) Change Is Good
During an Arizona summer, it's impossible not the turn on your air conditioner, but when you use it regularly, cleaning or replacing your air filters can also save you on energy use. Keeping your air ducts clean and unblocked will keep the system running smoothly and efficiently as blocked air ducts will require the air conditioner to work harder, wasting more energy than needed. 

Keep Your Cool
According to Energy Star, almost 90% of energy consumed by washing machines is used to heat water. Switching your washes from hot to warm, or warm to cold water is a smart way to drastically save on energy and money, without sacrificing the cleanliness of your clothes. Maracay Homes offer smarter living with Energy Star certified new homes, boasting appliances and features that are better for the environment and for you. 

Fill 'Er Up
When the kids are home all day for summer, it's easy to accumulate a mass of dishes. However, whether you wash a full load or just a few dishes at a time, the dishwasher uses the same amount of water. Placing your dishes in the dishwasher throughout the day and turning it on later when it is completely full is a great way to conserve water and energy. Hand-washing can also be a good way to save, but if you are constantly washing dishes by hand, your water use can add up to more than the dishwasher. 

Spin, Don't Spend
We know the air conditioner is the most beloved appliance of the summer, but try giving your ceiling fan a little more love this season to lessen your impact on the environment (and on your wallet). An average residential AC unit running for 12 hours a day can cost more than $150 a month to operate. A ceiling fan costs less than a penny an hour to operate, that's around $3.50 a month. While a ceiling fan will not actually cool your space (an 80 degree room is still an 80 degree room with a fan on,) it creates a breeze that makes it feel cooler, and you more comfortable. 

Cover Up (Close Blinds)
There's no need to put on your turtleneck, we don't mean that kind of cover up. We mean your windows! As beautiful as the summer sun can be, even with the air conditioner running, the heat will warm your house faster than you can say "go-green." Having blinds with light-colored backing can dramatically improve your home's temperature, by reflecting the heat rather than absorbing it, and save your air conditioner from running on overtime. 

Photo credit: European Parliament / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)