In May, GPRO Instructors shared preventive maintenance tips for O&M Pros to get ahead of the heat. Now, faced with heat waves and brown-outs, let’s talk about what regular consumers can do in the thick of the summer to reduce demand:
1. Read the meter.
As we say in GPRO O&M, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. The best way to control energy use is to first understand your baseline and work from there. Here in New York City, ConEdison is upgrading nearly five million customers to smart meters by 2022 to help do just that. Check out what’s available in your city to monitor and understand your energy use.
2. Change A/C filters.
We said it before, and we’ll say it again: change air filters regularly! A dirty filter makes an air conditioner work harder and use more energy.
3. Shut the blinds.
On sunny days, the sun’s rays pass through your window and heat up your space, kind of like your own personal greenhouse effect. To prevent that extra heat from contributing to your already sweltering house, close your blinds. Simple moves like this can lower your energy use and improve your level of comfort.
4. Run appliances during off-peak hours.
The dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer use a lot of electricity and it’s not necessary to run these during hours of peak demand, such as a hot afternoon. You should also only run full loads of laundry or dishes and consider air-drying items.