Make Your Spring Break Energy-Efficient

By Stephanie, March 6, 2012, Energy Efficiency, Save Money

spring break vacationSpring Break – it’s finally here, and families everywhere are excited. Whether you’re heading to the slopes for some end-of-season skiing, soaking up the sun on a tropical beach, or just hanging at home with the kids, it’s easy to make this an energy-efficient Spring Break.

Energy-Efficient Kids at Home

A week at home doesn’t mean your utility bill has to skyrocket. Kids can save energy and still have fun … maybe even more fun. Today’s kids are eager to do their part to save energy and protect the planet, so why not make Spring Break a great time to introduce some energy efficiency tips. You could even turn this quest for energy efficiency into a game by encouraging your kids to see where, when, and how these ideas can be best implemented around your home.

  • Watch out for vampires! Vampire energy, also called “standby power,” is the little trickle of electricity that leaks from the wall outlet into plugged-in radios, toasters, lamps, and other appliances even when they’re turned off.
  • Move your desk next to your bedroom window and use the natural light from outdoors to read during the day instead of switching on the lamp.
  • Start your own under-desk recycling center with a separate bin for collecting recyclable cans, bottles, and paper.
  • Configure PCs and laptops to sleep after a few minutes of inactivity. Power management options on computers prompt them to go into power-saver mode to save energy when you are not using it.
  • Generate your own energy. Turn off the TV, put the video games away, and dust off the bicycle. Not only is it more fun to spend the afternoon riding with your friends and family, you’ll save energy and get some exercise.
  • Brush your teeth after meals and snacks, but don’t leave the tap water running while you brush. Leaving the faucet running for one minute can waste up to two gallons of water.
  • Get your snack and get out of the fridge. Constantly opening and closing the refrigerator door wastes energy. If you didn’t see something you wanted in there five minutes ago, it won’t magically appear the next time you open the door.
  • Rinse and refill used plastic milk jugs two-thirds full and use them to fill up empty freezer space. A half-empty freezer uses more energy than a full one.
  • Plant a tree. It’s a fun activity, and as it grows, it will shade the house during the hot summer months to give the air conditioner a break.

Take Energy Efficiency on the Road

There’s no better way to shake a case of cabin fever than going on a Spring Break vacation, but taking that well-deserved trip doesn’t have to mean wasting energy. Every bit of saved energy adds up even when you’re staying in a hotel . Share your energy efficiency tips with your traveling companions.

  • Prep your home with energy saving Spring Break tips before you leave. Turn the refrigerator, the hot water heater, and the waterbed heater to their lowest settings. Unplug TVs, cables, computers, battery chargers, lamps, and microwaves to reduce vampire energy leakage.
  • Service the car before you leave. Adequate tire inflation and a new air filter will increase your car’s fuel mileage.
  • Carpool instead of forming a road caravan if you’re traveling with a group of friends.
  • Rent a bike or walk once you get to your destination instead of driving the car. You’ll save energy, get exercise, and you’ll see things you might have missed if you were in a car.
  • Enjoy the local foods every chance you get. Eating foods grown and produced locally saves energy in the form of transportation costs, and it supports local farmers.
  • Bring your own solar charger for small appliances like cell phones, battery-operated toothbrushes, and hand-held GPS units.

Use these Spring Break energy efficiency tips to make your vacation as good for Planet Earth as it is for you.

(Photo by Jstar1223)

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  1. […] A/C Usage Low During the Summer Get Your Home Ready for Summer and Save On Your Electricity Bill Make Your Spring Break Energy-Efficient Be Sociable, Share! Tweet Follow […]

  2. […] A/C Usage Low During the Summer Get Your Home Ready for Summer and Save On Your Electricity Bill Make Your Spring Break Energy-Efficient Be Sociable, Share! Tweet Follow […]

  3. Extreme Weather Alert: Dallas/Ft. Worth, Panhandle & West Texas Residents Urged to Conserve | Electricity Blog News Aggregator says:

    […] Need even more ideas? Check out these energy efficient posts from the past: 4 Quick and Easy Tips to Keep Your A/C Usage Low During the Summer Get Your Home Ready for Summer and Save On Your Electricity Bill Make Your Spring Break Energy-Efficient […]