The last thing you want when you return from a fun-filled vacation is a high energy bill. You haven’t even been home, so why are the bills high? The trick to preventing this situation is to implement the following tips designed to turn your summer fun into an opportunity for energy savings.
- Leave the air conditioner off. With no one at home to keep comfortable, feel free to let it get warmer than you normally would. If you have sensitive possessions that could be damaged in high heat, set the temperature to 85 or 90 degrees to prevent sweltering temperatures in your San Diego home. Set your programmable thermostat to resume a comfortable temperature the day you plan to return.
- Give your water heater a vacation. Either turn it off at the circuit breaker or set it to the lowest temperature possible while you’re away. Your unit might even have a vacation setting you can use. Be sure to turn the temperature back up the moment you arrive home so everyone can enjoy a hot shower again.
- Adjust the refrigerator. If your vacation is going to last just a few days, turn up the refrigerator temperature a couple of degrees for energy savings. The food will last because the door won’t be opening and closing while you’re gone. If your vacation is going to last for weeks, empty out and clean the refrigerator, leaving the door propped open so mildew doesn’t grow inside, or keep it on, lower the temperature and put bulkier items like flour and the like inside. This will reduce the amount of cooling needed.
- Keep it dark. Shut off all the lights in your home for noticeable energy savings during your vacation. For security purposes, you might consider using a timer to switch on a light in the front room at night.
- Unplug appliances. Devices such as the TV, surround sound, Internet router, computer, game console and microwave leach energy from the walls, even if they’re not turned on. Go around and unplug these appliances for energy savings while you’re gone.