Are you going away for the holidays? Whether it’s a weekend getaway or a week-long vacation, there are a few things you can do to save energy (and lower your bills!) while you’re away. Scroll through the images for 6 tips to save energy while on vacation.
1. Turn down your thermostats.
Setting all of your home’s thermostats to 55 degrees ensures that your pipes won’t freeze but you’ll also save energy by not heating an empty house. If you have a programmable thermostat, you can program it to raise the temperature for the day you’ll be returning, or if you have a thermostat controlled by a smartphone app, you can adjust the temperature remotely.
2. Adjust your water heater.
If you don’t have a tankless model, your water heater will continue to heat the water in your tank. Use the “vacation” mode if your model has one, or lower the temperature setting to minimize the standby heat loss. Having readily available hot water accounts for up to 20% of energy used in your home.
3. Unplug electronic devices and appliances.
Think items like your coffee maker, toaster, TV’s, DVD players, computers, and game consoles. These items are energy vampires- they drain energy when plugged in even if they’re not in use.
4. Lower the blinds or close the curtains.
Closing the blinds or curtains will help keep the heat inside your home and prevent the cold drafts from getting in.
5. Install timers on exterior lights and switch to LED lightbulbs.
Rather than leaving your lights on the entire time you’re away for security purposes, conserve energy by setting the timer to turn the lights on for a few hours each night. Additionally, switching to energy-efficient LED lightbulbs will mean fewer replacements and cost savings over time as they typically last longer.
6. Consider emptying your refrigerator and unplugging it.
Refrigerators are one of the biggest energy users in your home. If you’ll be gone less than a week or two and have emptied your fridge, conserve energy by adjusting the temperature to warmer settings. Around 38-40 degrees for the refrigerator and 3-5 degrees for the freezer. If you’ll be gone more than two weeks, consider emptying your refrigerator and unplugging it.