With the beginning of warmer weather comes the beginnings of new ways you can save money. Spring is just full of new opportunities, as it should be. Not only can you start doing more things outside when it comes to family activities or health and fitness, it can also really help start to lower some of your bills like electricity!
Are you ready to save money on your electric bill?
Electricity takes up such a big portion of most people’s bills every month. Some people spend hundreds a month, but there are lots of little ways, that over time can make a huge difference.
- Use Your Fans – Using your fans instead of air conditioning might not be quite as nice and cool, but it certainly will be nice when your bills is less. Did you know the simple act of changing the direction your fan rotates can help save money too? When your ceiling fan is set to go counter-clockwise, it pushes cold air down, versus when going clock-wise it pushes hot air down, so keep an eye on which way it’s spinning.
- Take a look at your window treatments – What’s covering your windows (if anything), can make a huge difference in the airflow and temperatures going in and out of your house. They can vary based on what is most effective, but some good ones that can help keep that heat out, and the cool air in. A few examples are blinds, curtains, drapes, window films, and more.
- Lower your water heat – According to Energy.gov, your hot water heater consumes on average 18% of your home’s energy. A good temperature to set it to is 120 degrees Fahrenheit. You won’t get burns or scalds, and your hot water heater won’t have to waste as much money on maintaining too hot a temperature.
- Say goodbye to your dryer – By switching to hang drying your clothes, be it inside on a drying rack, or outside on a laundry line, drying your clothes without a dryer will save you loads on your electricity bill, especially if you have a big family and lots of laundries to go around.
- Change your light bulbs – If you haven’t already done so, try switching to a more energy-efficient light bulb. They might cost an extra buck or two up front, but in the long run, will save you more. Not only do the LED light bulbs generate less heat (which means less electricity), they also last a lot longer too!
- Upgrade your appliances – Now, I know this is not something everyone can do, and it isn’t even something everyone needs to do, but if you have an old appliance (think 2004 and older), it might be time to upgrade. Energy Star became a thing in the ’70s, picked up speed in the early ’90s, and by 2004, was something you wouldn’t want to mess with. Essentially, it is what regulates and guarantees that your electronics are more efficient. When they’re less efficient, they have to work harder (and pull more energy), just to do the same amount of work as say, the same product, but from 2010. A real-life example, I was renting a house that had a very old stove (like, was probably a fire hazard old). When it finally bit the dust, and our landlord replaced it, we noticed a major drop of about $50 a month on our electricity bill, and nothing had changed except that stove.
- Soak up the sun – As the days get longer, the snowy clouds are less frequent (I did mention I was in Canada, right? Even as I’m writing this mid-April, we’re in the midst of an unexpected couple inches of snow), and the sun gets brighter, now is the perfect time to throw open the curtains, and soak up the sun! Get your fill of vitamin D, and if you do it while listening to Cheryl Crow’s Soak up the Sun (a favorite of mine growing up), all the better. Turn off your lights in the rooms you can, and whenever possible, just stick to that natural lighting.
- Clean your air filter – This is something you should definitely be doing on the regular. Not only can a dirty air filter make things like seasonal and dust allergies worse, but it can also lower the efficiency of your central air system. Make sure, even if you’re not replacing it every time, your at least cleaning it the recommended once every 90 days. Every 20-60 if you have one or more pets (think cat’s, dogs, and other animals that shed)
- Change your timing – A lot of electricity companies have peak and off-peak hours where it may be cheaper or more expensive to run electricity during certain times of the day and week. Check out your local electric companies and see what those times are. Typically, it’s cheaper on weekends and late at night, but every company is different. You never know, you may be able to save a lot of money just by doing your laundry after dinner instead of in the morning.
- Keep your doors closed – When it does come time to turn your air conditioner’s on, make sure you, (and everyone in the house), keeps the doors and windows closed. By doing this, you’ll keep the cold air in, and the hot air out. Besides, you shouldn’t be leaving your doors wide open all the time anyway. Like my mom always said when I was growing up; “You weren’t raised in a barn!”
Share your tips and tricks with our readers!
What are some of your best tips and tricks to save on electricity this spring and summer? Let’s talk about it in the comments.