Keep food cool as temperatures heat up
Summer is great for grilling. That means you don’t have to use electricity to operate the oven or stove – or cool a hot kitchen. It’s a great way to be energy efficient and save, but don’t stop with energy efficient cooking methods. Consider how you can conserve and save money while cooling those leftovers after the barbecue. Use these simple tips to keep your food — and your bill — cool this summer:
- Fill the fridge. Full refrigerators and freezers don’t have to work as hard to cool the warm air that enters when you open the door. If you have more space than you need, use jugs of water or ice bags in the freezer to keep your fridge full and cool.
- Do some maintenance. When was the last time you moved your refrigerator away from the wall? Last month? Last year? When the deliveryman put it there? Pull the unit away from the wall and spend a few minutes cleaning the coils. When the coils are clean, the refrigerator cycles on and off less often, saving you money.
- Check your settings. You probably don’t need to keep your refrigerator and freezer on the coldest settings. Your refrigerator can be set between 36 and 38 degrees, while your freezer can be set anywhere from 0 to five degrees.
- Shut the door. The more you open the door of your refrigerator and freezer, the more cold air escapes and warm air gets in. Of course you have to open the door to get food in and out, but an organized fridge means less time spent staring at containers and moving pizza boxes around to find what you are after.
Other tips to help you save
- Consider getting rid of that extra fridge or freezer in the garage. If you aren’t really using it, that old fridge is costing you a few dollars every month to cool a few cans of soda.
- Visit energystar.gov before making a purchase. Their refrigerator retirement savings calculator can be a big help, and their advice can help you determine the best, most efficient appliance for you.