Summer has finally arrived in Michigan – which means grilling, swimming and driving with the windows down. Everyone loves more sunshine, but the hot weather that lures us outdoors also tends to raise our energy use, and possibly your bill. Good news is it doesn’t have to!
We are here to help you stay comfortable, reduce your electric use AND maximize your savings. After all, small changes can make a big difference for your budget planning.
Below are a few summer energy savings tips you can do in just a few minutes to lower your energy costs on hot days. More long-term savings ideas can be found at: ConsumersEnergy.com/save
To keep your home from heating up and save on your electric bill in the summer, use ovens, dishwashers and dryers in the morning or evening when it’s cooler outside. They add extra heat to your home and make your air conditioner work harder to battle higher outside temperatures.
To save even more, cut down on appliance use when electricity costs are higher, which is between 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. during the weekdays, June 1 through Sept. 30.
Save up to 3% on cooling costs for every degree you dial up your thermostat in the summer. By pre-cooling your home in the morning and keeping doors and windows closed, your A/C won’t run as often during the hottest parts of the day.
You can also let nature do the cooling. As much as we crave the sunshine, closing drapes, shades and blinds during the day to prevent the sun from heating your home unnecessarily is another way to save on your electric bill in the summer. If you still want to take in the scent of freshly mowed grass, open windows and doors in the early morning and evening to let cooler air in. Don’t forget to turn off your A/C if your windows are open!
Ceiling fans cool fast and cost less than air conditioning. Run your fan counterclockwise to create a cooling down draft. Most models have a switch on the side of the motor you can flip to change direction. Search for your fan’s manual online or dig it out of the filing cabinet if you aren’t sure how to change the direction of your fan blades.
Be a good neighbor by checking in on older neighbors and family members who may be at higher risk from summer heat and humidity, or on a tighter budget. Helping them implement these tips will keep them safe and lower their energy bills.
If you haven’t already, visit ConsumersEnergy.com/alerts to sign up for high bill alerts and be notified if your energy use is expected to exceed your normal range.
For help understanding how and when you’re using energy, login to review your personalized Energy Dashboard. This information will help you determine other changes you could make to save money on this summer. And, as always, if you are having trouble paying your bill, you can call 2-1-1 to connect with your local assistance agency.