Tips to Save Energy and
Reduce Bills While at Home

SDG&E understands the increasing financial hardships facing families and businesses due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. With many in our community working and caring for their children at home, households may see an increase in energy use. We are committed to helping customers stay safe and reduce energy costs during this pandemic.

 

Track your energy use

If you are concerned about increased energy usage at home, a great way to track your usage is SDG&E’s newly updated mobile app, available in the Apple App store or the Google Play store. The app has a tool that allows you to monitor your day-to-day energy use.

Heating and lighting

  • For safety and efficiency, keep all heating vents and furnace registers free of dirt, lint and obstructions. (It’s important that you keep your portable heater at a safe distance from furniture, blankets, draperies and other objects that could catch fire. Never hang clothes to dry on or near your heater or heating vent.)
  • Adjust your ceiling fans to rotate clockwise at a low speed to pull cool air up. The gentle updraft pushes down warm air, which naturally rises to the ceiling.
  • Keep blinds open and use natural light to both illuminate and warm your home during daylight hours.

Large appliances, TV and game consoles

  • Check the temperature on your water heater and set it to 120 degrees. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that a heater set at 140 degrees or higher can waste up to $60 annually in standby heat losses to keep water hot.
  • Dust off the top of your refrigerator and coils to keep it running efficiently and cool.
  • Use cold water in your clothes washer. Many newer washers are designed for cold water.
  • Turn off your dishwasher’s dry cycle and let your dishes air dry.
  • Lower the brightness on all screens.
  • Use Energy Saving features that may be available on your electronic devices.
  • Plug all personal electronics in a power strip and turn off the power strip when devices are not in use.
  • Cover liquids and wrap foods stored in the refrigerator. Uncovered foods release moisture and make the compressor work harder.
  • When streaming content, choose the smallest device that makes sense for the number of people watching. Avoid streaming on game consoles, which use 10 times more power than streaming through a tablet or laptop.
  • Throw a few tennis balls into the dryer with your load to reduce drying time.

Cooking

  • Don’t open the oven door while food is cooking. You can lose up to 50 degrees in temperature and waste energy.
  • Cover pots when cooking and cook by time and temperature guides.
  • Cook several meals at the same time.
  • Use small appliances such as toaster ovens, electric pressure cookers, microwave ovens, or convection ovens for small meals rather than your large stove or oven. They will save energy and can save on cooling costs in the summer because they generate less heat.

More helpful resources

  • Access your MyAccount portal to view your pricing plan options and other ways you can save energy.
  • Check to see if you are eligible for bill discount programs at sdge.com/assistance. The California Alternate Rates for Energy Program (CARE) provides income-eligible customers with a 30% or higher discount on their monthly energy bill.
  • If you are having trouble paying your bill, we are here to help. Please contact SDG&E customer service reps at 1-800-411-7343 to make payment arrangements to suit your needs.

Please know that SDG&E will continue to provide you with safe and reliable energy services during these challenging times. The energy industry has a lot of real-world experience managing crises, and while the COVID-19 crisis is different, we are well prepared. Our highly skilled and dedicated employees will see our community through this crisis.