12 Ways To Save Energy at Home During COVID-19

Simple tips to help manage your home energy usage and bills during this difficult time.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our daily lives, we together face the stress and struggle as schools and businesses remain closed.

With more people remaining at home, households may see an increase in energy usage - the latest estimates predicting that disadvantaged households could see increased energy costs of up to $174 million. Here are simple tips and easy-to-use resources to help manage your home energy usage and bills during this difficult time.

Heating and cooling

  1. When it's cold outside and health permitting, set thermostats at 68°F when awake and 58°F when asleep.
  2. Wear a sweater or use a blanket to stay warm instead of adjusting your thermostat.
  3. When gathered in one room, use a space heater instead of central heating. (Be sure to read the safety guidelines first!)
  4. Open blinds and windows to warm and light your home naturally.

Appliances and lighting

  1. Unplug small appliances and electronics, like coffee makers and printers, when not in use.
  2. Clean your dryer filter after each use.
  3. Take shorter showers and only run full dishwasher loads.
  4. Use a small lamp to spotlight your work space instead of overhead bulbs.

Electronics, TV's and game consoles

  1. Turn down brightness and set automatic "eco" and energy-saving features in TVs and consoles.
  2. Stream media on smaller screens, like tablets.
  3. Use computer sleep and hibernate modes.
  4. Plug all personal electronics into a power strip and simply turn off the power strip when not in use.

Our very best tip? If you haven't already, join OhmConnect - a free program that pays you to save energy when there's too much demand on the grid. You'll be doing something good for the planet, and you could earn a pretty penny too! All PGE, SCE, SDG&E and Toronto Hydro customers are eligible.

Katie Overmonds

Katie is an award-winning journalist and digital strategist with more than 10 years of experience in print and digital media and a passion for the environment and fighting climate change.

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