Tips for Managing Energy Use during COVID-19

ARLINGTON, Va. – As American families and businesses transition to remote-work, they may see a surge in home energy use – and in upcoming electric bills. Simple money-saving steps can help lower monthly electric bills without jeopardizing safety or comfort.

“America’s electric cooperatives understand the increased financial hardships facing families and businesses due to the economic impact of COVID-19,” said Jim Matheson, NRECA CEO. “While many electric cooperatives have suspended disconnections for non-payment and are waiving late fees, consumers will still be responsible for those bills when the pandemic has passed. It’s important for families to be mindful of their energy use and consider adjusting certain habits to avoid higher costs later on.”

Recommended energy saving tips include:

  • Program your thermostat to maximize energy savings. Setting your thermostat one degree lower when heating or one degree higher when cooling can reduce energy use by up to 5 percent. 
  • Do full loads of laundry and wash with cold water. Using warm water instead of hot can cut a load’s energy use in half, and using cold water will save even more.
  • Air dry dishes.  This step can cut your dishwasher’s energy use by up to 50 percent.
  • Substitute LEDs for conventional light bulbs. Lighting can amount to up to 12% of monthly energy use. LED bulbs can cut lighting costs by 75%.
  • Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Small appliances and electronics use energy even when not in use. When powered on, game consoles, televisions and similar electronics are responsible for up to 12 percent of energy use.

For more information on energy saving tips visit this link from Touchstone Energy, the national brand affiliated with NRECA dedicated to helping many electric cooperatives better engage and serve their members.

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national trade association representing more than 900 local electric cooperatives. From growing suburbs to remote farming communities, electric co-ops serve as engines of economic development for 42 million Americans across 56 percent of the nation’s landscape. As local businesses built by the consumers they serve, electric cooperatives have meaningful ties to rural America and invest $12 billion annually in their communities.