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How to Lower Your Electric Bill in Summer

The summertime is always a peak time for electricity consumption. Everyone runs air conditioners to keep cool on top of their usual electronics and devices. Bills seem to skyrocket, but you can battle the added expense.

Here's how to lower your electric bill in summer:

  • Keep the sun out Close your curtains or shades against the sunlight. The sun's rays aren't just light, they're also heat. Your air conditioners won't have to work as hard if your rooms are cooler [source: Grotta].
  • Put the right air conditioner in the right place Bigger isn't always better. Have the right sized air conditioner for the room it's in. Also, put the air conditioner in the window near the center of the wall in a shadier area of the house [source: Grotta].
  • Maintain your air conditioner units Clean or replace air filters at least once a month to maintain the maximum airflow. Keep debris and landscape away from the outside of your air conditioners. Get annual professional maintenance for your air conditioners. The amount you saving in electric bills will offset the cost and then some [source: Grant].
  • Don't cool an empty house Turn your air conditioner off or down when you're not home. Also, on cooler days and nights turn the thermostat to a warmer temperature, or turn off the unit altogether. Many newer units have programmable timers; use them [source: Grant].
  • Use full appliances Having a full refrigerator actually uses less energy because when you open the door, it takes longer to warm up. Your fridge won't have to work as hard to stay cool when it's full. Only run the dishwasher and washing machine when full, so you do less loads. Also, don't run the dishwasher's drying cycle or use a laundry dryer. Let your dishes and clothes air dry in the heat [source: CaliforniaEnergyCommission].