How to Save on Utilities – Part 1 Electricity
Ever looked at your utility bills and died a slow death when you wrote the check? Ever paid half the bill instead of all of it? Do you actually read your bill to know what you are actually using in utilities?
One of our main concerns today is saving money and spending less so that we can redirect our money to pay off debt. This allows us to have a more enjoyable life and provide for our families. Here are ten fantastic tips to save your household money on electricity and keep more money in your pockets where it belongs.
- Set your thermostat to 78 degrees heat/air. This is a neutral setting that allows a comfortable atmosphere that’s not “too hot” or not “too cold”. It will also prevent “jolts” in your electricity bill from turning the thermostat on/off or up/down. Programmable thermostats are a great tool to control heating and cooling costs. Also, check to see if your new thermostat qualifies for a rebate
- Invest in blackout curtains. These curtains will not only keep your home cool, but adds a touch of flare and totally eliminates the bright light from the sun that beams into your home especially on hot summer days.
- Unplug unnecessary appliances and electronics. Did you know that even though a device is off, if it is “plugged in” power still cycles through. With this in mind, let’s unplug those items that we rarely use daily i.e (foreman grill, dvd player, roku, paper shredder, blenders, rice cookers, crock pot, etc). Ever thought about how your surge protector can save you money? Invest in an Energy Saving Surge Protector where you have ‘Always-On’ outlets for devices such as your DVR, which is always recording or your router. The other devices will only come on when you press ‘Power On’. Other that no power is being sucked out without your permission. You control it all. See how much you can save with that!
- Set a family laundry day. Washing and drying small loads daily or every other day can be inconvenient, time consuming, and makes your electric bill increase. Select a certain day of the week to complete the laundry (and ironing if possible) and you will definitely save money on your electricity and water bills at the same time.
- Sign up for Flat/Budget Bill. This is an excellent option especially if you have a large family. If you qualify for either plan, this allows you to use as much electricity you want whenever you want without getting “sticker shock” when your bill arrives. It will be a set bill each month with no surprises! Contact your power company to see if you can sign up!
- Apply for the Weatherization Program. If you own a home in Georgia, CAFI (Community Action For Improvement) offers this free program in certain areas by sending qualified personnel to inspect and weatherize your home including sealing air leaks, adding insulation, installing weather stripping and caulk, and replacing CFL bulbs. Visit www.cafi-ga.org for more information.
- Install Ceiling fans. Believe it or not ceiling fans use pennies on the dollar. It helps keep the room cool especially at night and adds a nice ambiance to most bedrooms and living rooms.
- Set desktop computers on energy save mode. Computers can use a lot of electricity since they stay on everyday. When not in use, select the “sleep” option on your computer keyboard or start menu. This will not only saves energy, but preserves your computer for a longer life span. A great surge protector wouldn’t hurt either.
- Turn off lights and electronics in empty rooms. Have you ever walked past several rooms in your home and the t.v. and lights are on with no one in it? This occurs regularly in most homes, especially on weekends. Encourage a “device night” with your family and have one or two main rooms everyone can relax in and watch their favorite shows or play games on tablets or phones without using a lot of electricity.
- Invest in a energy efficient air conditioner. This option may not be in most families budget, but this will say hundreds of dollars on your electricity bill a year. You will also eliminate those pesky “leaks” you are told about and avoid having to pay for freon every summer. Some companies may offer financing in certain areas if you qualify.
Ready for Part 2 – How to save on your Gas bill!
This post was written by Nakeeta Malone, a contributing writer and work-at-home professional. She enjoys spending time with her children and providing support for blogs.