Monday, 20 August 2012

Summer Energy Savings at Home and Work

It's been one of the hottest summers in Ottawa in recent memory, but fortunately there are many small actions we can take to help save energy and money, and reduce our personal and home impact on the environment. 

If you work in an office environment, there are many things you can do to help conserve energy. Try:
  • shutting off lights, computers and office equipment when not in use;
  • reducing or avoiding large photocopying and print jobs;
  • keeping outside doors closed as much as possible to keep cool air inside;
  • taking the stairs instead of the elevator;
  • closing the blinds in your workspace when your windows receive direct sunlight.

At home, you can energy by following these tips:
  • turn up your air conditioning a few degrees (24° - 25°C) to cool people, not the house; 
  • make sure you turn your A/C up or off when you leave your house;
  • turn off all lights when you leave the room, even if it is only for a couple of minutes. Lights produce a lot of heat which works against the AC;
  • install dimmer switches;
  • set your refrigerator’s temperature only as cold as you need (check your manufacturer’s guidelines);
  • use smaller appliances for cooking whenever you can e.g. use your toaster oven or microwave instead of your oven;
  • run appliances such as dishwashers after peak hours and only when full;
  • prepare cold dinners such as salads on hot days;
  • use fans in the summer to help cool your home.  Make sure that they blow downwards.

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