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Tips For Keeping Cool And Saving Energy
With some really hot weather expected to kick in, that usually means a big increase in the demand for energy as Rocklanders turn up the air conditioning to stay cool.

Orange and Rockland Utilities says some basic steps can help Rocklanders get through the hot weather and avoid putting a huge strain on the area’s power network.

Here are some steamy weather tips:

Set the thermostat of your central air conditioner at 78 degrees F or higher to achieve maximum savings on your cooling costs. Setting the room temperature on the air conditioner at 75 degrees costs about 15 percent more. A 72-degree setting costs about 30 percent more than the 78-degree setting.

Install a timer or clock thermostat on your air conditioner so you can program it to operate and shut-off at pre-determined hours. That saves you from running it all day so you return at day’s end to a cool house. If you have a room air-conditioning unit, close off the rooms not being used; if you have central air, block off the vents for un-used rooms.

Plan cooking, baking or other household activities that produce heat and humidity for the cooler times of the day and night. Use a portable or ceiling fan to circulate the pre-cooled air in your air-conditioned home. A fan uses about 90 percent less energy than an air conditioner.

In very humid weather, adjust your air conditioner’s fan to a low setting. It’ll take longer for the air conditioner to cool your home, but your unit will bring in steamy air at a slower rate and make you feel more comfortable. As the sun moves from east to west during the day, pull your curtains and shades on windows to block out the heat.

The refrigerator is one of the largest energy-using appliances in the typical home:

Maintain a constant temperature in the refrigerator of between 36 and 38 degrees for maximum effectiveness. The freezer should be kept at 15 degrees.

If the temperature outside is 95 degrees or more, change the refrigerator temperature to a higher setting so it does not have to work as hard. Cover liquid items. They give off humidity that forces the refrigerator to use more energy.

Place the most used items in one place so that the door will be open for a shorter period of time

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