Hot temperatures can impact your comfort and your energy costs. Keep cool and save with these helpful tips from our friends at ENERGY STAR® and rebates from PPL Electric Utilities.
1. Consider an HVAC upgrade. If your cooling equipment is more than 10 years old or needs frequent repairs and your energy bills are going up, it may be time to replace the system. Get rebates of up to $450 on ENERGY STAR certified cooling equipment through PPL Electric.
2. Install a smart thermostat. An ENERGY STAR certified smart thermostat saves energy by adjusting to your schedule and favorite temperatures. You can even control it right from your phone. We offer rebates of up to $100.
3. Insulate and seal air leaks. Feeling different temperatures from room to room? Updating insulation and sealing air leaks can keep the hot air out and improve the efficiency of your cooling system. Save with rebates of up to $700.
Check out more information on our current rebates.
It’s June, and that means summer is here. You can offset the summer heat by incorporating some energy efficient habits into your routine. Here are a few tips to help you save energy and money as temperatures rise.
Take advantage of shade. Blocking the sun’s warm rays can help lower your home’s temperature. Try planting trees or shrubs outside of your home’s windows, or purchase sunlight-blocking shades or curtains.
Keep hot air from leaking into your home. Seal openings with weatherstripping or caulk.
Install a smart thermostat. You can save energy with an ENERGY STAR® smart thermostat by setting temperatures to match your schedule. Leaving for a few days? Adjust the thermostat before you leave home or control it from your phone. We also offer rebates up to $100 for the purchase of a smart thermostat.
Check your HVAC air filter every month. Your heating and cooling systems use more energy than anything else in your home. Routine maintenance, like replacing or cleaning air filters, can lower your system’s energy consumption by up to 15%, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. If the air filter looks dirty, change it.
Use a ceiling fan. As long as indoor humidity is not very high, running a ceiling fan allows you to set the thermostat four degrees higher without a noticeable change in comfort.
Check out our Virtual Home Energy Assessment. A no-cost Virtual Home Energy Assessment is the perfect way to kickstart your energy efficiency journey. Your free virtual assessment includes a phone consultation with a trained Energy Advisor, energy efficiency recommendations, and a free personalized energy savings kit. For more information, visit pplelectric.com/virtualassessment.
For even more tips and ways to save, visit savewithppl.com.
Tip 1: Plant shade trees to cool your home
The summer sun hits your home’s walls, windows and roof. This heats up your house, causing your A/C to work overtime. Planting trees around your home can provide shade, giving your air conditioning unit a much-needed break.
Tip for tip 1:
To the south and west of your home, plant trees that shade your walls, windows and at least 20% of your roof. Plant deciduous trees that grow 25‒40 feet tall when mature for the best results. Plant the trees with their trunks at least 15‒20 feet away from your walls, and make sure there are no power lines or other obstructions nearby.
Tip 2: Use ground cover in place of grass or turf
Adding plants to your yard can help keep it cool. Replace part of your lawn with lush ground cover. Water will evaporate off the leaves of the plants, cooling the air around your home.
Tip for tip 2:
Choose low, slow-growing plants that do not require much water or fertilizer to grow. Keep plants 1‒2 feet away from house foundations to avoid a buildup of moisture or pests.
Tip 3: Plant shrubs to better shade your air conditioner’s condenser
Creating shade for your air conditioner can cool down the air around it. The result? Your A/C unit doesn’t have to work as hard to cool your air before sending it into your house.
Tip for tip 3:
Plant tall, narrow shrubs (with a height of around 5‒8 feet). Leave 3‒5 feet of space between the shrubs and the A/C unit for better airflow. And don’t forget to leave room for airflow around the A/C heat exhaust vent.
Tip 4: Plant a windbreak
Planting a windbreak near your home will create an area of still air next to your house. This will prevent drafts and increase your home’s energy efficiency.
Tip for tip 4:
Decide which direction the wind blows most frequently on your home. On that side, plant an unbroken row of evergreen trees that won’t lose their foliage in the winter while blocking the wind year-round. Make sure the edge of the trees is about 5 feet away from your exterior walls. The row of trees should also extend beyond your walls on both sides.
For more energy efficiency tips and ways to save, visit savewithppl.com.
Earth Day is a great opportunity to take small, easy steps to make your home more energy efficient so you can save money year-round.
Plus, by becoming more energy efficient, you can make a real impact on the world. Efficiency is good for the planet. It reduces greenhouse gas emissions, decreases water use, and helps create a healthy environment for us all.*
Here are ten easy tips to help you spring into action today.
- Plant trees and shrubs to provide shade on the sunniest sides of your home.
- Allow hot foods to cool before putting them in the refrigerator – storing hot food makes your fridge work harder to cool it down.
- With the weather warming up, consider cooking a few meals outside to reduce the amount of heat inside your home.
- Use light-colored window coverings to help reflect heat away from entering your home.
- Use motion sensors for your outdoor lights. That way, they’ll only use energy when they’re on.
- Install LED light bulbs in your most frequently used lights – kitchens and bathrooms are a great place to start.
- Combine printers, computers, monitors, TVs, game consoles and other electronics on easily accessible smart power strips that can be switched off when not in use.
- Add weather stripping to drafty doors and windows.
- Combine fans with air conditioning – a fan can allow you to raise the thermostat setting and still stay comfortable.
- Wash and rinse laundry with cold water whenever possible.
For more tips — and to check out our full offering of energy efficiency rebates and programs — visit savewithppl.com.
Spring cleaning isn’t just the perfect time to tidy up, get organized and get ready for summer. It’s also a great way to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Yes, really! Cleaning and organizing can positively impact the performance of electronics and appliances of all kinds—and that can have a real effect on your energy bills. Let’s look at ways to clean up devices throughout the house.
- Use smart power strips to reduce “vampire power” loads. Vampire power is energy drained from the wall by your appliances even when they are in sleep mode or turned off. A “smart strip” can automatically cut power to devices you’re not using. Choose the best smart power strip for you with this handy chart from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
- Plug groups of electronics that you use at the same time—like your TV and gaming console—into the same smart strip. You can pick a strip that turns off automatically at a certain time or one that turns off everything when you power down a key appliance.
- Check the door seal. Sticky foods can prevent the fridge door from sealing. Wipe it clean with warm soapy water.
- Clean your condenser coil. Dust can collect on the coil, making it work harder and longer—while raising your energy bill. You can clean it yourself with an inexpensive coil cleaning brush, or hire someone to do it for you.
- HVAC system
- Your heating and cooling system uses more energy than anything else in your home. Routine maintenance, like replacing or cleaning air filters, can lower your cooling system’s energy consumption by up to 15%. And spring is the perfect season to call your HVAC professional for a yearly inspection and cleaning.
As always, stay safe and follow all appliance and electronics instruction manuals. If you’re unsure about how to best clean an appliance, don’t be afraid to call a professional. They can get the job done right and maybe even give you a few pointers for next time.
Happy spring cleaning!