A Summertime Challenge to Kids – Be Wattsmart Cool
June 05, 2012
PORTLAND, Ore. — Even before the final bell rings to mark the end of the school year, parents are gearing up for summer activities for the family. While many of these activities will take place in the warm summer sun, having gadget-loving children hanging around the house more hours of the day can bump up energy consumption.
Pacific Power and Energy Trust of Oregon are challenging kids and their parents to be wattsmart this summer. The wattsmart challenge encourages people to use energy wisely, not only by limiting time spent online or playing video games, but by wisely managing thermostats and power switches.
“While playing online may be cool summer fun, ‘powering everything off’ will save electricity and bring some relief to the power bills this summer,” said Carol Hunter, vice president for energy efficiency, Pacific Power.
There are many ways for kids and parents to save electricity:
- Turn off lights and TVs when you leave a room – Make it a habit to last all year long!
- Shut the door – Be sure to close the door behind you when going outside so you don’t let in the hot air.
- “Unplug the thug” – Unplug cell phone and electronic gadget chargers when not in use. They continue to use energy while they are plugged in.
- Don’t window shop in the refrigerator – Minimize the amount of time fridge doors are open to prevent cold air from escaping.
- Shut off computers – Some computers continue to use energy even when they’re in sleep mode. And, limiting screen time isn’t just a good idea during the school year… get outside for some summer fun.
- Set the thermostat on your air conditioner to 78 degrees – Use a programmable thermostat to set the temperature to 78°F or as high as comfortable when you’re at home, and 85°F when you’re gone.
- Check for blocked air vents – Keep inside air vents clear from furniture or other objects. Blocking vents makes your air conditioner work hard to cool down rooms.
- Keep blinds and windows closed during the day and open at night – This is a no-cost way to help keep your home cooler. And turning on a ceiling or window fan in the evening will help circulate air and keep you feeling cooler.
- Take it outside – Encourage parents to fire up the grill. Outdoor cooking is a great summer activity, and avoids the heat that can result from cooking in the kitchen on hot days.
- Paperless billing – Keep your mailbox from overheating by using your tech savvy to help your parents sign up for paperless billing, saving paper, time and money.
Pacific Power encourages all families to take the wattsmart challenge and order a free Energy Saver Kit from Energy Trust. Install it with your kids' help to teach them about being wattsmart.
Order a free Energy Saver Kit and see more wattsmart ideas at bewattsmart.com.
About Pacific Power
Pacific Power provides electric service to more than 733,000 customers in Oregon, Washington and California. The company works to meet growing energy demand while protecting and enhancing the environment. Pacific Power is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity producers in the United States, with 1.7 million customers in six western states. For more information, visit www.pacificpower.net.