Washington Co. residents coping with heat wave

Friday's excessive heat warning extended from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

July 21, 2011|By KATE S. ALEXANDER |
  • Justice Dingle, 9, of Hagerstown slides down the waterslide backwards at Potterfield Pool in Hagerstown Thursday.
By Chris Tilley, Staff Photographer

Tips to reduce air conditioner's energy usage

With hot and humid weather expected to continue across the area, FirstEnergy Corp.'s utility companies, including Potomac Edison, offer the following tips to help customers save money and conserve electricity:

  • Consider setting air conditioners a few degrees warmer on hot days. Every degree you add to your interior temperature in the summer can reduce your energy usage by up to 3 percent.
  • Close drapes or blinds on windows that receive direct sunlight. Blocking the sun's rays reduces the temperature in your home, meaning your air conditioner has less work to do.
  • Close air-conditioning registers in unused rooms and keep the doors to those rooms closed. That will reduce the amount of energy your air conditioner will use to maintain your home's temperature.
  • Don't position heat-producing appliances near wall-mounted thermostats. That makes your air conditioner run longer than necessary to maintain your preferred temperature.
  • Turn off electric appliances and equipment that you do not need or are not using.
  • Postpone using major electric household appliances, such as stoves, dishwashers and clothes dryers until the cooler, evening hours.
  • Cook with the microwave instead of the oven. Traditional ovens require far more energy than microwaves, and they produce substantial heat inside your home, making your air conditioner run longer.
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