Before You Go ...  
Are you ready for a summer vacation?  Before you hit the road for the long July 4th weekend, make sure your house is on vacation mode too. Here are some tips so you'll have more to spend on summer fun.
If you're not leaving any pets in the house, turn up your air conditioner thermostat to about 85 degrees. As a precaution, don't turn the AC completely off. A home that gets too hot during the summer can invite mold and mildew.
Don't worry about re-cooling your house when you get home; the energy you save while you're away will exceed the energy it takes to cool the place off when you get back..  
Close all of the windows, for both safety's sake and energy efficiency. Draw the curtains, shades and blinds. They will block sunlight and heat from transferring into and warm up the house.
Unplug the TV, computers, phone chargers and countertop appliances. Also, perform a last minute check before you lock the doors. Insure ceiling fans, alarm clocks, coffee makers, and all other auto-on devices are turned off and unplugged while you're away. Even appliances that are turned off still use energy if they're plugged in.

Refreshing Pool Safety & Efficiency Advice
Few things are as refreshing as a quick dip in a cool pool on a hot summer day. Soak up these pool safety and efficiency tips to save lives and money while maintaining your personal oasis.
Safety Tips:
  • Never leave children alone near a pool, or any place where water and electricity could potentially meet.
  •  Pools often have electric underwater lights, circulating pumps and heaters, that if improperly installed or poorly maintained pose a serious danger. Only hire a licensed electrician or qualified pool professional to service pool equipment, or to inspect pool wiring to insure it's up to code and poses no hazard.  
  • Build a fence or other barrier to separate the pool from the house and the yard. Padlock fence gates to keep children unattended children from wandering into pool area.
  •  Install ground fault circuit interrupters (GCFIs) on all outlets that power outdoor electric equipment.
  •  Never use extension cords to power pool equipment.
Efficiency Tips:
  • Pools are equipped with huge energy guzzling pumps. The bigger the pump, the higher the power bill potential. Use the correct size pump for your pool size to be most efficient.
  •  Invest in a variable-speed pump, which is more efficient.
  • Run your pump for six hours a day or less, as suggested by the U.S. Department of Energy's
  • Use a timer to run your pump for several short periods during the day rather than allowing debris to pile up after one long continuous filtration.
  • Also, keep drains clear of debris so your pump doesn't have to work as hard.


Safety Tips  
Fun in the Sun
When heading out for some fun in the sun, keep these boating safety tips in mind.
  • When trailering or in the water, be sure to stay clear of all overhead power lines by at least 10 feet. When thinking about clearance, consider boat antennas and masts, as well as the tides.
  • When fishing, make sure to check for overhead power lines before casting.
  •  On the lake or ocean, be aware of signs indicating underwater electric utility lines. Don't anchor your boat near underwater cables. 
  • Never ever swim around boat docks. Low level electrical currents can leach into the water from dock wiring and from boats plugged into shore power, causing electric shock drowning. This can happen in any location where electricity is near water, but most deaths occur near public and private marinas and docks, and the typical victim is a child swimming around a dock.

  For more safety tips visit our Safety & Consumer Tips
Energy Efficiency Tips 
Let the sun work for you! Consider solar lights for outdoor lighting. Solar cells convert sunlight into electricity that can be stored in a battery and tapped at night to make light. Check manufacturers' instructions to make sure your solar lights are situated to receive sufficient sunlight so they will fully recharge during the day, and give you a full night's work.

For more energy efficiency tips visit our Energy Savings Center.