We all want to give the planet a break, and Earth Day is a great time to start living a more energy-efficient lifestyle. One way to do that? Plan energy-saving days with your family at home! Here are five easy ways to start:
Cool your home with a cross breeze.
On milder days—or warm days with a heavy breeze—you can save a ton of energy by switching off the AC and opening a few windows instead. Those open windows will create a natural airflow that can go a long way towards keeping you comfortable. If the breeze isn’t strong enough, try switching on a few fans before you run for the thermostat.
Minimize your use of artificial light.
There’s no way to avoid the simple fact that we need light to live. Where and how you get that light is up to you, though. Open the blinds, let the sunlight in, and consider making a rule that during daylight hours the only light switch that gets flipped is the one in your closet or bathroom. You can take it a step further by using candlelight to illuminate your home after dark—just be mindful of the open flame.
Cook as a family—on an outdoor grill.
Outdoor grilling is a great way to save energy, enjoy the outdoors, and bond as a family over a delicious meal. If you’re not sure where to start, just grab your favorite meat or vegetable, toss some seasoning on there and throw it on the grill. But If you’re not the spontaneous type, there are tons of grill recipes available online, including those that accommodate special diets. Plan your meal as a family, then take turns manning the grill while relaxing in the fresh open air. When it’s ready, consider dining outdoors to keep the energy-efficient party going.
Keep a log of how much energy you save.
If you’re serious about changing your habits, the best way to do it is to keep track of your energy usage and watch the savings stack up in real time. PSO makes this easy with online energy analysis broken down by year, month, week and day. Visit My Energy Advisor , then login or register to see your energy usage.