With the holidays just around the corner, there is a great chance that some of you have plans to head out of town. WAIT.. before you lock the door to catch that flight, or get in the car and scroll to the road trip playlist on your iPod, don’t forget to shut down your house.
Here are a few quick and extremely easy steps to shut down your house or apartment before a weekend trip:
Set your thermostat
The polar vortex may be gone (that thing sure did overstay its welcome!) but it’s still freezing in parts of the country. After all, it is winter. Before you leave set your thermostat to between 50-60°. Make sure you leave the thermostat at a comfortable setting for any pets that will be sticking around.
This way, you won’t be heating an empty home (and wasting money) and your pipes won’t freeze or burst in the event of a sudden drop in temps.
Unplug those appliances!
No, not your refrigerator. But definitely don’t forget about the other energy-wasting culprits around your home.
That toaster oven sitting on your counter and the automatic wine opener your fiancé’s mom bought you for Christmas–they don’t need to be constantly plugged-in.
Clear some space on the counter and shave money off your electric bill by only plugging in appliances when necessary.
Use a power strip
I’m sure you can think of at least one person (maybe it’s you?) with a desk or media console table tangled in cables and cords like Medusa’s hair. Do yourself a favor and plug your computers, TVs, tablets, game consoles, set-top boxes and any other home office or media electronic you might have into a power strip.
When you leave for the weekend turn off the power strip and you’ll lower your electric bill at the same time. Easy peasy lemon squeezy(is that a word?)!
Bonus! Think home safety
If you’re concerned that your house will look too dark (and inviting to would-be robbers), consider plugging your lamps into a programmable timer, which will turn lamps on and off at specified times, making it look like someone is home. Even if you are not home, Harry and Marv will think so.
For more about Energy saving tips, check out this article: http://www.ase.org/blog/3-energy-money-saving-tips-remember-while-youre-away-home