There are many ways to save electricity year-round to help reduce your energy costs while preserving our natural resources.

  • During the summer, especially when you are not home, set your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher. Increasing your air conditioner 7 to 10 degrees 8 hours a day can save up to 10 percent on cooling costs.
  • Use smart or programmable thermostats to set and control temperature directly from your smart device and effortlessly maintain energy savings, even when you’re not at home.
  • Use a ceiling fans instead of air conditioners, and adjust blades to run counter clockwise to push cool air down. Postpone using appliances like the oven, dishwasher, clothes washer, and dryer until cooler times of the day to avoid heating up your home.
  • Clean or replace air conditioner filters.
  • Caulk or seal around air vents, registers, doors and windows. Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees or the "normal" setting when home, and to the lowest setting when away. Water heating accounts for about 13 percent of home energy costs.
  • Contact your electric utility for more energy-saving tips, and to check for rebates for energy efficiency upgrades. Contact your utility for information on participating in a voluntary residential or commercial demand response program, which involve short, temporary reductions in energy use in exchange for financial incentives.
  • Learn more about saving energy in commercial buildings by visiting
  • Reducing water use during a drought conserves precious water supplies, but also saves energy. About 20% of statewide electricity use in California goes to water-related activities, including treating, pumping, and delivering water to your home, treating wastewater or heating shower water. For more information, visit Save Our Water.

Learn about the work of the UC Davis California Lighting Technology Center to accelerate development of automated electricity systems to help consumers conserve energy and save on utility bills, while improving power grid reliability.