Five tips to lower your energy costs when summer arrives

by Tom Simplot

Apr 12, 2015

When it’s hot outside, we race to the thermostat to get air moving. Energy can get expensive in the spring and summer months in Arizona, but there are lots of small things you can do to keep costs down. These tips will save you money and some will even keep you safer.

  1. Try it two degrees warmer. Every degree on the thermostat counts when it comes to cooling costs. According to APS, one of Arizona’s leading energy providers, you could save 2-3 percent on cooling costs for every degree warmer you set your thermostat. Instead of 75 degrees, try 78 and turn on the overhead fan. The fan will make the room feel cooler as it moves air around. While you are away, turn the thermostat up. If you have the AC on, be sure to close your windows, too.
  2. Your dad was right, turn off the lights when you leave the room. Turn off all unnecessary lights, especially in summer. When you leave a room, flip the switch. Lights not only cost money, they give off heat.
  3. Get on the right plan for your energy use. Most electricity providers in Arizona offer rate plans that reward customers for shifting their energy use to off-peak hours when rates are lower. Visit your power company’s website for more information.
  4. Do your cooking during cooler parts of the day. Rather than defrosting food in the microwave, take dinner out of the freezer in the morning and let it defrost in the fridge.
  5. Unplug energy vampires. Most everyday electric appliances probably stay plugged in all the time. The TV, DVD, cable box, computer, toaster and coffeemaker are all electricity vampires. Even when appliances are off, they still consume energy. Consider getting a power strip or surge protector to turn off all power with one switch. For a coffeemaker or toaster, just unplug it when you are done using it.