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May 18, 2011

Summer Frugal Goals

For those of us in the western northern hemisphere summer is quickly approaching. Not only does that mean I finally get to come out of hibernation and come outside to enjoy the wonderful weather, but it also means it's the season for many frugal tricks tips and ideas. Summer opens up many more opportunities than the cooler and colder months of the year. I am setting up goals for myself this summer, my first summer of being frugal. Everyone should make their own goals or list of things to be extra frugal with this summer or follow mine if you wish.

  1. Run the in-window air conditioner only when it is absolutely dreadful to bear the heat or in the beginning stages of going to bed. I love being warm, so I'm sure I'll survive. Once the AC is needed, I won't be setting the thermostat to 66 like I have during previous years. I'm going to set the thermostat to a comfortable 75 degrees. Also, most AC units have a timer on them that can turn off or turn on at a specified time. This can definitely increase efficiency of its use.
  2. Use ceiling fans to circulate warm stagnant air. Make sure your fans are blowing air and not sucking air. The movement of air will create a very cool and breezy effect, lessening the need for the air conditioner to be running.
  3. Dry clothes outside rather than in the clothes dryer to save on electricity (or gas depending on your dryer).
  4. Grow fruits and vegetables in a garden. Not only is it frugal, but you have the enjoyment, fun, and pride of keeping your own garden and growing your own foods.
  5. Have picnics, walk outside, enjoy free outdoor events, visit the river or lake, etc. There are plenty of free and fun activities to do during the summer that won't decrease the size of your wallet. 
  6. Run the pool filter at certain times of the day and only when it's needed. Shut off the filter at night. 
  7. Use water sparingly. If you do tend to keep a garden, leave buckets outside to catch water during rainstorms. You can use this water for gardening purposes rather than using your own water from the house. 
  8. Drive less and walk and bike more often. It's less stressful, less costly, increases exercise, and is more fun. 
  9. Check for insulation errors and keep doors closed at all times when the AC is running. It may be tempting to have the door open during the summer with such beautiful weather, but it can only be one or the other and not both. 
  10. Close curtains and blinds during the day, especially when not around in the house. This will dampen the effect of radiational heating and keep the inside of you home cooler, lessening the need for AC.
How does everyone plan to save this summer?

    3 Responses so far.

    1. Anonymous says:

      I run my AC at 78 - and it feels great when it's 90+ outside.

    2. AndyB says:

      I'm sure it does :D I'll try putting it that high for a while and seeing how I fare :P

    3. Anonymous says:

      I'm dieting, thus eating less. That will save money right?

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