Save Money on Your Utility Bills Part 1-Electricity

This is the first of three post on saving money on your utilities each month. The post will be here once they are completed. Subscribe to our feed to get all the post as they become available!!

Out of necessity we have researched, and implemented, several ways to reduce the cost of utilities for our household. Although some of these tips may only apply to single family dwellings, most can be used in apartments as well. It is a good idea to insert a disclaimer here. Some of the information we came across was rather drastic, and while these things work for us, they may be drastic to you. Assess your comfort level, then proceed. The items are listed in no particular order, just a random collection of ideas to make living a little cheaper.

Electricity

  1. Hot water heater. Adjust the temperature on your hot water heater to a few degrees lower. Buy an insulation blanket for your water heater. A temperature of one-hundred twenty degrees is recommended by www.energystar.gov for a savings of up to $461.00 per year.
  2. Install CFL’s in most used light fixtures. This simple move made a 600 kwh difference in our electric bill in one month. That is 7200 kwh/year x .098/kwh = $705.60 in one year!!! Basically you get the same amount of light for around 1/4-1/3 of the cost. Over the life of the bulb it is estimated that it will save you around $30 in energy cost. They also last longer than incandescent bulbs, so you save on the cost of purchasing bulbs every few weeks.
  3. Clean out your dryer vent before each cycle. As with your car filter , a clean filter lets your dryer breathe and remove the moisture quicker. Another way to save is to air dry clothes on a line. Personally, we do not like the way this makes the clothes feel, so we use a combination. We air dry, on a line outside or on hangers in the house, until the clothes are almost dry. Then we place them in the dryer for around 10-15 minutes just to use the fabric sheets and take the “stiffness” out of them. We have not calculated how much this saves, but the dryer is in use approximately 1/3 less than usual. This could benefit both gas and electric units.
  4. Refrigerator/Freezer. Invest in a cheap thermometer to gage the temp inside your refrigerator and set your thermostat to the proper setting. One way to save is to place bottles of water in the freezer to take up space. A full freezer requires less energy to cool. When you need all the space in the freezer, the bottles can be placed in the refrigerator and will actually help keep that area cool as the ice melts. Also be sure to clean out the coils on the your refrigerator per your units instructions. Again, proper air flow is crucial.
  5. Cooking. Try to do all your baking together. If you are baking biscuits for breakfast, and plan on corn bread for supper, bake them together. It saves a great deal of energy preventing the oven from having to heat up twice. If you are using your oven for toast, bagels, or just a couple of biscuits, consider purchasing a toaster oven. They use considerable less electric vs. a conventional oven. When possible, reheat items in a microwave instead of on the stove.
  6. Unplug unused items. Most electrical items can use a trickle of energy even when not in use. Take a stroll around your abode and unplug all items not in use.

Other ways exist to lower the bill a little here and there, but these are the ones we have practiced that made the biggest difference. In the next post pf this series we will explore ways to save on the water bill.

How do you save on electricity? What has made the biggest impact on your household?

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2 Responses to “Save Money on Your Utility Bills Part 1-Electricity”

  1. Utilities And Gas Saving Tips Says:

    Utilities And Gas Saving Tips

    Thanks for this post!

  2. Heat and Air | Chicago Cooling Repair Says:

    […] save money on heat and air bills will require a little more time and effort than was required for electricity or water.  Because your heat and air units require so much energy (electricity, gas, propane, […]

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