10 Ways to Save on your Electric Bill
With so many of us having to stay home due to the coronavirus we're bound to use more electricity than normal. But it's during uncertain times like these that we want to save a buck whenever possible!
No one likes to waste money but that’s exactly what happens if you’re not careful about your electricity use.
Here are 10 ways to help you save money on your electric bill.
1. Turn Off Lights
This one seems pretty obvious right? Turning off the lights in rooms you’re not using is probably the number one place to start when trying to save electricity. It is as easy as flipping a switch.
Despite how easy this fix is, it’s still one of the number one tips when it comes to saving electricity. After all parents have been hounding their children to turn off lights since electricity was invented!
If this is a problem in your home, you could try using motions sensors that will automatically turn the lights off if no one is in the room. This way lights won’t get left on all day even if a child leaves their bedroom light on.
Let in as much natural light as possible during the day. Harnessing the power of the sun can be as simple as opening your blinds and curtains on a bright day.
2. Upgrade to LED Light bulbs
LED lights are the latest and greatest when it comes to lighting for you home. The US Department of Energy says that LEDs use at least 75 percent less energy than incandescent lighting. If that weren’t enough to convince you to make the switch, they also last 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs.
That’s a huge twofer. You’re not only saving more energy and money by using LED light bulbs you’ll also use less of these bulbs over time which makes for even more savings. They also don’t put out as much heat which is very helpful in the summer to help keep air conditioning costs down.
LED light bulbs are easily ordered online without you having to leave home and go out in public. There's no need to break social distancing protocol to save on electricity.
3. Use Fans in the Heat
For those living in hotter climates using fans can be a great way to stay cool. One of the reasons that summer is such an electricity heavy season is because of air conditioning. Anything that can help to reduce the use of air conditioning when the temps are high will help to reduce your electricity usage.
While fans still use electricity they make a huge difference for the temperature of your home and electricity use. Using a ceiling fan in particular can make your room feel up to 10 degrees cooler!
4. Buy Energy Efficient Appliances
Another great way to save energy without even thinking about it is to buy energy efficient appliances. If your appliances are only a few years old, you might not see a huge difference by upgrading to new ones.
If your appliances are more than a decade old though, you’re much more likely to see a difference in how much power you’re using. Especially if you’re replacing your most energy costly appliances like a refrigerator. A new energy efficient refrigerator will use less than half of the energy a 12-year-old model might.
Be sure to keep an eye out for the Energy Star label when shopping for your new appliances. That will ensure that you’re getting the most energy efficient appliances possible. Energy Star appliances have to meet more strict standards than what’s required by government standards.
5. Wash Clothes on Cold
Your washer and dryer use up a significant amount of electricity. It’s not just the power that it take to run the machine itself, it also takes a lot of electricity to heat the water used to wash your clothes.
By washing your clothes in cold water you’re saving a lot of power. Keep in mind that many types of fabric and clothing do better with cold water anyways so your clothes won’t wear out as quickly. There are plenty of cold water detergents available that can help you get your clothes just as clean while saving on your electric bill.
6. Use a Smart Thermostat
Heating and cooling your home is expensive, we all know that. In the winter people try to use as little heat as possible without turning their family into a family of snowmen. In the summer we play a game of “how hot can we stand it?”
One thing that can help with these issues is a smart thermostat. Instead of trying to remember to manually adjust the thermostat through out the day, you can program your smart thermostat to do this for you.
By very closely monitoring and adjusting your home's temperature with a smart thermostat you can save hundreds on your electric bill over the course of a year.
7. Air Dry Dishes
This one might seem a little bizarre but the process of drying dishes requires a lot of power. That’s a waste of electricity if you have the time and patience of simply letting your dishes air dry in the dishwasher.
While it might seem natural to take it an extra step and wash your dishes by hand, washing dishes by hand can use more water and power than using a dishwasher. So instead of using the dry cycle try cracking your dishwasher open and letting them dry naturally next time.
8. Keep Dryer in Tip-Top Shape
I already mentioned that washers and dryers use a lot of electricity but dryers really are power suckers. They can account for nearly 6% of the power used in your home. And unless you decide to line dry your clothes there’s really no avoiding using your dryer.
That’s why you need to make sure your dryer stays in tip-top shape. Clogged lint catchers and vents can seriously reduce the efficiency of your dryer. A stuffed up dryer means clothes take longer to dry using up even more power.
Checking your lint trap before every load of clothes and regularly having your dryer vents cleaned will ensure that your dryer works at its best. Bonus points for helping to support a local vent cleaning business during this difficult time.
9. Unplug Unused Appliances & Electronics
You might assume that if you’re not using an electronic or appliance that it’s not drawing power but that’s just not true. Putting your computer "to sleep" doesn’t mean it’s totally off. Same thing for your TV or other electronics. If there’s a light on, it’s sucking power.
Unplug what you’re not using. If you’re not using your toaster, unplug it. You can also use a power strip that can be turned off instead of having to unplug everything you’re not using.
10. Add Solar Panels to Your Home
If you’re worried about saving electricity and power, why not produce your own instead? With solar panels you can potentially eliminate your power bill altogether. Even better your solar panels could pay for themselves in as few as 10 years or less.
You’re not just making power and cutting down on your electric bill you’re also adding to the value of your home and helping the environment by cutting down on carbon emissions and pollution.
During this unfortunate crisis the Federal Reserve has slashed interest rates even further. That means a solar loan could be more affordable than ever for you! We're partnered with LoanPal, Sunlight Financial and Dividend.