When I leave for vacation what should I do before I leave to save energy?

Question

When I leave for vacation what should I do before I leave to save energy?

Asked by Adam Clayton

Is it worth messing with my water heater, turning my A/C completely off, etc. ?

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Answers

Lucas Johnson's picture

First of all, it is refreshing to hear someone is so conscious ofenergy consumption! I too want to feel fully relaxed while on vacation,and I have some impact-guilt associated with the "vampire loads" in myhome.

The short answer is yes there are many things you can do, but youneed to be careful in some cases.For instance, turning down your water heater to the lowest mode is agreat idea. However, turning it fully off could potentially lead tosome problems.

  • If you live in a really cold climate, your pipes couldfreeze.
  • Or, if you don't know how to light the pilot (assuming anatural draft water heater), it can be a bit risky to re-light.
  • Sameidea applies for central heating and A/C systems...don't turn themcompletely off, but set the thermostat so the system won't kick on.

Other ideas are unplugging the entertainment zone (TV, video games,etc.), computers, and internet. These items all tend to use asignificant amount of electricity when plugged in, even if they areturned off.

If you get a daily newspaper, you could request they don't deliver whileyou're gone to limit the gas footprint of delivery.

Lastly, one thing I do for improved security, is use a timer switch toturn on one LED bulb (only uses 6 watts for the bulb) from dusk untildawn.

I'm sure our other green pro friends have some ideas, but I feel like Icovered the main ideas applicable to most homes.

Cheers,
Lucas