As we all begin to consider how we transition back to some form of how things were before, it is important to understand that social distancing (standing six feet apart) can protect loved ones and help flatten the curve. But what does six feet look like? It can be as tall as a door or as wide as an average sedan.
A door is a relatively easy object to locate if you are questioning whether you and another person should move farther apart. Six feet is a little shorter than the average door size, which runs from 78 to 80 inches. Another way to determine if you are far enough away from someone is to consider the width of your car. An average large sedan is a little more than six feet wide. For more information on social distancing, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov.
Another important topic to keep in mind during this time is managing energy usage. As families and businesses have transitioned to remote-work, they may see a surge in home energy use – and in upcoming electric bills. Therefore, it is important for families to be mindful of energy use and consider adjusting certain habits to avoid higher costs later on. The following simple, money-saving steps can help lower monthly electric bills without jeopardizing safety or comfort.
- Program your thermostat to maximize energy savings. Setting your thermostat one degree lower when heating or one degree higher when cooling can reduce energy use by up to 5 percent.
- Do full loads of laundry and wash with cold water. Using warm water instead of hot can cut a load’s energy use in half, and using cold water will save even more.
- Air dry dishes. This step can cut your dishwasher’s energy use by up to 50 percent.
- Substitute LEDs for conventional light bulbs. Lighting can amount to up to 12 percent of monthly energy use. LED bulbs can cut lighting costs by 75 percent.
- Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Small appliances and electronics use energy even when not in use. When powered on, game consoles, televisions, and similar electronics are responsible for up to 12 percent of energy use.
- Let the sunshine in. Whenever possible, allow the sun to light and warm your home to save energy on heating and lighting.
- Seal air leaks. A cool windy day is a great time to locate air leaks in your home. By sealing uncontrolled air leaks, you can save 10-20 percent on your heating and cooling bills. Seal leaks with caulking or foam sealant, and use weather stripping to stop drafts around exterior doors.
- Track your usage. Download our SmartHub app to monitor daily and hourly usage to learn more about how you use electricity in your home.
Also, please remember to remain alert to potential scams. If something seems unusual, please contact Central Electric Cooperative (CEC) directly.
Please stay safe and know that CEC will continue to operate and provide the highest-quality service possible for the members they serve.