Top tips to stay cool and save energy this summer

What’s the best way to stay cool and comfortable during the dog days of summer while saving on energy costs?

That’s easy: Energy Star®. Here are some upgrades the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends for keeping everyone and
everything cool from pooches to the planet.
Pump up your cooling system
If your cooling system is more than 12 years old—or you’re looking to upgrade for the summer, replace it with an Energy Star certified heat pump (see Steele-Waseca Cooperative Electric’s website,, for heat pump promotions through June 30). Heat pumps work great for cooling too, and are super-efficient for year-round savings and home comfort. During the summer months, the heat pump serves as a central air conditioner and reduces cooling costs compared to conventional air conditioners. In the winter months, a heat pump can deliver up to three times more heat energy than the electrical energy it consumes, costing less to operate than traditional HVAC equipment such as furnaces, boilers, or electric resistance heat. They also help you transition from fossil fuels for a cleaner, healthier home.
Get smart about your thermostat
A smart thermostat that has earned the Energy Star label is the perfect way to control your temperature settings to save energy and money.
They’re called smart because they learn your family’s preferences for heating and cooling without you having to program them like old programmable thermostats.
Plus, they take the guesswork out of what settings will optimize for comfort and energy savings, adjusting the temperature in your home throughout the day to fit your needs, and save money on energy bills. Families with high energy use can save $100 per year.
Seal and insulate to keep it cool
You could save up to $190 a year by sealing air leaks around your house and adding insulation. In most homes, the attic is easy to access and improving it has the biggest benefit. A good insulation contractor will start by sealing air leaks and then will add insulation to the recommended level on top.
Replace those old windows
Old windows make it hard to keep your home comfortable and will drive up cooling costs. Energy Star windows have invisible coatings that block solar heat. Replacing your old windows with Energy Star certified windows can lower household energy bills by a national average of 12 percent—that’s more than $200. Plus, you’ll have improved comfort all year long.
Be a fan of fans
Ceiling fans are great for moving the cool air around the room and creating a nice breeze in the summer. If you raise your thermostat by only 2 degrees and use your ceiling fan, you can lower your air conditioning costs by up to 14%.
For more than 25 years, people across America have looked to EPA’s Energy Star program for guidance on saving energy, saving money, and protecting the environment. For more information visit