How to save energy is something that’s on a lot of people’s minds when money is tight and there are better things to spend it on. Summer is the season to save energy and money, with simple strategies that take very little effort.

Cut costs with canny cooking. In summer you don’t want to be slaving over a hot stove. On hot days cold meals are the most refreshing. Think salads, fresh summer fruits and spreads of meze or tapas. Outdoor cooking can also save you money if you’re permitted to light open fires in your zone. If you have a fire pit or outdoor grill area it’s easy to cook, using scrap wood that isn’t useful for other purposes. Who wouldn’t rather be outdoors than in the kitchen? Take some shortcuts and devise hot meals that can be heated up in the microwave. It’s a huge energy saver compared to a stove.

Make sure you are using your refrigerator optimally. One tip is to make sure it’s not too empty – they are designed to have stuff in them! In summer you’ll probably be opening the door more than usual for ice, cool drinks and similar. If it has a fair amount of chilled food inside it will lose less heat. Another way to make sure your refrigerator isn’t doing overtime is to place it somewhere where it’s not in direct sunlight. It really does make a difference.

If you think you’ve covered the bases on how to save energy – congratulations! But there may be a lot more you can do. Aircon is an energy guzzler so use it as sparingly as possible, at home and in your car. To avoid switching on the air conditioning, make sure you have drapes or blinds, and get into the habit of closing them to keep the home cool. Solar window film can also reduce indoor heat dramatically. Another great and, literally, green way to shade your home is to plant deciduous trees and shrubs outside the windows. They’ll provide leafy coolness in summer, and when the leaves drop the light will still pour in.

Sunshine is free energy, and the obvious resource if you’re wondering how to save energy. There’s little reason to use a dryer for laundry in summer and the smell of fresh, sun-dried linen is hard to beat. Conserve your own energy too – instead of drying the dishes get out in the garden. Easy to grow plants will mean fewer visits to the store. Really easy fruit and vegetables to grow include tomatoes, swiss chard and berry fruits. Then, when you’ve soaked up the sun in the yard, try a refreshing cold or cool shower instead of a hot bath.
    
The recipe for how to save energy is a bunch of common sense plus a bit of effort and planning. It’s well worth it, for the wellbeing of your bank balance and the planet.  

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