Deeper Shades of Green: Managing Cooling Costs

Summer is in full-swing, barbeques are being put to use, ice cream trucks troll neighborhoods, and cooling costs are at their seasonal high-point. How do we stay comfortable in our homes without resorting to lying down on the kitchen floor with the fridge door open? Well, TRIP would like to offer you a couple tricks to keep cooling costs low while staying comfortable during these hot, summer months:

1. Program your thermostat responsibly. If you regularly leave for work at 8:30 AM every morning and return home at 5:30 PM, program your thermostat to automatically set itself higher during those hours… maybe even have it start cooling more about 15 minutes before your scheduled return so that when you open the door you can still feel that cool burst of air! A suggested summer temperature range is 74-78 degrees.
2. Use light colored blinds or shades, and keep them closed while you’re out. White or light colored window coverings will reflect sunlight better than darker colors, and if sun and heat are kept out, cooling will be less of an uphill battle.
3. Avoid heat generating activities during the hottest parts of the day. Did you ever think, “It’s summer” would be an excuse for you to put off doing laundry? Running large appliances such as washers, dryers, and ovens produces additional heat in your house– save those chores until later in the evening when it is not as hot.