Hot weather has us thinking about cool ways to be energy efficient this summer. It’s easy to take steps to manage your energy bill with these no-cost tips.

  • Keep the sun out. Close blinds, shades and drapes on the sunny side of your home during the day to keep rooms cooler.
  • Lower your water heater temperature. Set your water heater temperature to 120 degrees. The average household spends about $300 a year on water heating costs. A lower temperature is an easy way to rack up big savings.
  • Wait for a full dishwasher. Use less water and save on your energy bill by only running your dishwasher when it’s full. Use the no-heat drying setting for an extra boost to your energy efficiency.
  • Wash clothes in cold water. Do laundry the energy-efficient way. Heating water accounts for about 90% of your washer’s energy use, so wash laundry in cold water whenever possible. In hot summer months, this step can help you avoid adding more heat inside your home and decrease the work load on your air conditioner.
  • Be an energy-efficient cook. Just by using the right size pot on a burner, you can save about $18 a year in natural gas. And using a microwave to cook small portions can reduce the energy you use for cooking by as much as 80%. Plus, avoiding using your range or oven can save on air conditioning costs in summer.
  • Get a free water conservation kit. The kits include low-flow showerheads, kitchen and bathroom faucet aerators, pipe insulation and a water temperature card. These items are easy to install so you can begin saving on your home’s water heating costs right away.
  • Keep your bill stable with Budget Billing. Budget Billing spreads your annual energy costs more evenly over 12 months, reducing the impact of seasonal changes.