(Richland, WA) -- The Franklin County PUD is offering some tips to both stay cool and keep your energy bills low. They follow below

  • Set your thermostat to the highest setting comfortable for you. The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be. Avoid setting your thermostat at a colder setting than normal when you first turn on your air conditioner. It will not cool your home any faster and could result in excessive cooling and unnecessary expense.
  • Avoid using your oven, dryer, or dishwasher during the hottest times of the day.
  • Use ceiling and oscillating fans to create a “wind chill” effect. The moving air makes the temperature in the room feel cooler, allowing for a higher thermostat setting.
  • Close blinds and window coverings during the hottest times of the day to reduce heat radiating into your home. 
  • Grill outdoors or use your microwave oven to prepare meals.
  • Turn off lights, tv and appliances when not in use.
  • Turn down the temperature on your water heater. Water heating can account for 14 to 25 percent of energy use. Turning your water heater down to the warm setting of 120 degrees can save you a few dollars a month.
 
Things to look for and fix immediately:
  • Check your cooling system filter. A dirty filter will reduce air flow and can put extra stress on your system causing it to fail. 
  • If there is light coming in around outside doors – replace or add weather stripping. It is available at local home improvement stores. Leaving areas unsealed can be as wasteful as leaving the door open. 
 
Lastly, have a plan:
  • Extreme weather increases the chance of a power outage and we want you to be ready. Have a plan in place in case power goes out and you need a cool place to stay. Check on your extended family and neighbors to ensure everyone’s safety.