Cheeseburger loaded with toppings in a patriotic theme
For northern states, this weekend kicks off the warm summer season. And for us southern states, we begin the mental aspect of summer – vacation and relaxation.
Here are some tips for saving energy as you spend time with family and friends this Memorial Day:
1. Taking out the boat? Do this.
Make sure you go easy on the throttle. The harder you hit it, the more gas you consume. And when you load up your boat, take the bare minimum amount of stuff you can along with you. A heavy load is the other major fuel consumer. If you can be precise enough, fill your fuel tanks to about half full. That helps reduce your load. Refueling trips will be necessary, but they won’t consume as much fuel as carrying a heavier load.
2. Cut your propane use when grilling.
Most of the wasted fuel when grilling comes when you preheat the grill. So, just make sure you preheat as little as is needed to cook your meal. Generally this should be around 5-10 minutes.
3. Take a shorter vacation.
Were you planning to drive a couple states over for a family vacation? That’s okay to do from time to time. If you really want to save though, think about a closer location you’ve never visited. To get ideas, just take a look at a map of your state and see what national/state parks are around. Pick one you haven’t visited before.
4. When you do drive…
Consider purchasing a fuel-efficient vehicle if it fits in your budget. Drive the speed limit. One story also claims it’s more efficient to drive with the windows down versus turning on the air conditioner. We’re not sure about that, but consider testing out how that works in your vehicle.
5. Watch the AC if you’re staying home.
There’s nothing wrong with keeping it simple and staying at home this Memorial Day weekend. If you do that, watch your home energy consumption. Keep the shades down to keep your home cool. Don’t leave the doors open. Long-term, think about planting trees to provide shade for your home.
Remember, it’s most important to have a good time with your family over Memorial Day weekend. Don’t get so obsessed with saving energy that you ruin your enjoyment of the weekend. At the same time, you can still enjoy your weekend fully while being kind to the environment and saving money.