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Savvy Summer Energy Tips

Savvy Summer Energy Tips

A young boy wearing a hate and green sunglasses eats a popsicle outside in a green park during summer.June 24, 2024

As temperatures rise, so do our energy bills. These practical, energy-saving tips from Washington Gas can help you stay comfortable, reduce costs and use energy resources more efficiently.

Optimize Air Conditioning

Your air conditioner is likely your home’s largest energy consumer in the summer. Aim for a thermostat setting of 78°F when you’re at home, higher when you’re away. Each degree below 78°F can increase your energy consumption by about 8%.

A programmable thermostat lets you set a schedule that automatically adjusts the temperature when you’re not home, reducing unnecessary cooling. Clean or replace filters monthly and service your system regularly to keep it in peak condition.

Use ‘Natural A/C’

Natural ventilation can significantly reduce your need for air conditioning. Open windows during cooler times, like early mornings and evenings, to create cross-ventilation. Close blinds or curtains during the hottest parts of the day to block out the heat.

Reduce Heat Gain and Improve Insulation

Appliances generate heat, making your home warmer and causing your air conditioner to work harder. Use your microwave, toaster oven or outdoor grill instead of your stove or oven, especially in the evening when it’s cooler. Unplug devices or use smart power strips to reduce standby power usage.

Insulate your attic and walls to reduce the heat entering your home. Check for and seal leaks around windows, doors and other openings to keep warm air out.

Maximize Natural and Energy-Efficient Lighting

Take advantage of natural light for lighting instead of artificial light whenever possible. Switching to energy-efficient lighting can also reduce your cooling load. LED bulbs use up to 75% less energy and produce less heat than incandescent bulbs.

Fix That Flow

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that household leaks waste nearly a trillion gallons of water yearly in the United States. One leaky faucet dripping one drop per second can add up to more than 3,000 gallons per year—enough for 180 average showers! Check out more easy ways to fix water leaks in your home at bit.ly/washgas-fix-leaks.

And while not exactly a leak, leaving a faucet running while brushing your teeth uses much more water than you may realize. According to the EPA, turning off the tap while brushing can save an average of four gallons of water per brushing.

Consider Energy-Efficient Appliance Upgrades

Summer is a great time to consider highly efficient ENERGY STAR® appliances, estimated to have helped American families and businesses save more than $500 billion in energy costs since 1992. In fact, Washington Gas is proud to be a multiple recipient of the ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award. Learn more at bit.ly/wg-estar-2024.

Level Up Landscaping

Strategically planting trees and shrubs around your home can provide natural shade and help keep your home cooler while adding beauty to your property. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, properly placed trees can save up to 25% of a typical household's energy for cooling. Consider planting deciduous trees on the south and west sides of your home to provide shade in the summer and allow sunlight in the winter when the leaves fall.

Explore Washington Gas Programs

A professional energy audit can identify areas where you can improve your home's efficiency, providing personalized recommendations to help you save energy and reduce costs. Washington Gas partners with local agencies to offer weatherization services, including insulation upgrades and sealing leaks, particularly for low-income households. Learn more at bit.ly/washgas-energy-audit.

We also offer multiple energy assistance programs, including the award-winning Washington Area Fuel Fund (WAFF). Learn more at bit.ly/washgas-energy-assistance.

Your energy choices also play a critical part in global energy conservation. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates that primary energy use will increase between 16% and 57% by 2050. At the same time, the International Energy Agency estimates that it’s possible to reduce global emissions, for example, by up to 40% simply through energy efficiency.

Alongside the value of these day-to-day actions, Washington Gas is leading large-scale advanced technologies to help provide our region with affordable, reliable and safe energy. By making energy-conscious choices today, we can all help build a more energy-efficient future.

We hope these summer energy tips will help you stay comfortable while supporting efficiency. Be sure to read our complete list of energy-saving summer tips at bit.ly/wg-summer-tips.

Happy summering!


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