Energy costs are so high that in the summer we need to do all we can to save. And here in Arizona, we have lots of summer! Here are some of the simplest things you can do to reduce heat-producing activities in your home or apartment during the summer. There's no investment involved, no construction, no appliances to buy. Just common sense.
Time Required: Almost None
- Don't use the oven. Use a microwave oven, or use a barbecue grill.
- Use a slow cooker to prepare one dish meals without adding heat to the house.
- Put lids on pans to hold the heat in while cooking.
- Most hot water heaters have thermostats that may be set to 140 degrees for hot water. This usually isn't necessary--turn the thermostat down to 120 or 115.
- You've probably heard that taking a bath uses less water than a shower. That may be true, but if you take a short shower, say about 5 minutes, you'll only be using one third of the amount of hot water than you would with a bath.
- Don't use the drying function in your dishwasher. Let the dishes air-dry.
- Wash only full loads of dishes and clothes. Dry your clothes on hangars or outside.
- Try to do any ironing at one time to prevent having to heat the iron several times.
- Do "wet" chores in the early morning or at night when it's cooler. This will help to keep humidity down. This includes washing clothes or dishes, mopping floors, watering indoor plants, etc.
- Turn off computers, printers, copiers, and home electronics when they are not in use. Surge protectors that allow you to plug several items into one strip with an on/off switch make this even easier.
- Sign up for the About Phoenix Desert Heat E-Course, and learn more about coping with heat in the desert. It's free!