Tips to save money and keep cool this summer

WASHINGTON — The summer heat has arrived in the Mid-Atlantic region, which means you can expect more expensive utility bills. But the plus side is, there are ways to save some money.

Daisy Pridgens with Dominion Power share some tips on how to conserve energy and therefore, save money.

Tip #1: Use the air conditioner wisely

To help reduce your energy bills, Pridgens suggests keeping your thermostat at about 78 degrees.

She also suggests leaving the shades closed while the air conditioner is on. “Sunny windows can add a lot more heat to your home and can make your air conditioner work a lot harder,” Pridgens said.

In addition, remember to check and clean the filters regularly so the system can run more efficiently.

Tip #2: Reconsider when you use your utilities. 

Not only will postponing activities like running the dishwasher or the laundry washer and dryer to nights or early mornings lighten the burden on the electric system, it will also reduce the heat and humidity being generated inside the home.

One way to save money throughout the year, Pridgens says, is to unplug things you don’t use every day.  That could be a lamp, a toaster or even a phone charger.  Not only do they use power even when they are off, but they also generate heat.

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