A quick and easy way to reduce your electricity bill is to turn off appliances at the powerpoint when you’re not using them. When things like computers and TVs switch into standby mode, they still use electricity, which can really add up over time.
To make your water heater even more efficient, drain the tank and flush out the sediment at the bottom (Photo 2). Otherwise, you could be heating through inches of sediment before heating the water.
If your fridge was made before 2001, it’s using at least 40 percent more electricity than new Energy Star models. If you’re replacing your fridge, buy an Energy Star model and recycle your old one. Don’t hook up the old one in the basement or garage—an inefficient refrigerator costs as much as $280 a year in electricity. Any money you save buying food in bulk and storing it in an inefficient second fridge is lost in electric costs.
A programmable thermostat can save you tons of money over the long run (as in, thousands of dollars). If you don’t have one, consider making the investment. It’s also one of the easiest ways to save electricity because of the whole set it and forget it approach. There are many ways to save on electricity.
Dishwashers may use electricity, but they save more energy, money, water and time than hand washing. According to the California Energy Commission, using an Energy Star-qualified dishwasher instead of hand washing can save you, on average, 5,200 gallons of water and $40 in utility costs each year, not to mention 240 hours of your time.
Insulate your home. Making sure there are good seals on the doors and windows leads to huge savings in energy costs. Insulation keeps your home from leaking cool air-conditioned air during the summer and warm heated air during the winter. Have a contractor inspect your home’s insulation to determine whether it’s efficient enough. Consider the attic, crawlspaces, basement, walls and ceiling. You may want to look into fitting your home with new insulation. Weather-strip your home by using caulk and weather strip in your doorways, windows and around window air conditioners. You can also purchase plastic sheeting to put over the windows during the winter.
If your family members can never seem to be able to turn off a light, then the best solution is motion detectors, such as the GE Indoor 120-degree Motion-sensing Light Control or the Defiant Indoor 360 Degree Motion Sensing Socket. They only turn on when someone’s in the room and then turn themselves off when they don’t detect any movement. You can get these at your local home improvement store and they simply screw into light sockets. Then, you screw the (hopefully energy efficient) light bulb into the motion detector. It’s crazy-easy, and the US Department of Energy says that using sensors like these can cut wasted lighting electricity by 30 percent.
Speaking of summer, if you run an AC, consider planting trees on the south and western sides of your house. The shade will help it stay cooler. Bonus points if they are fruit or nut producing trees too!
Understand that this saving is not restricting your freedom, but this a way to be fair to yourself, the nature and rest of the world. Unplug electric appliances when not in use to save electricity. Try to use the air conditioner less by turning on one at a time to cool the whole house. Instead of using the air conditioner, you can save money by opening windows or using fans, especially ceiling fans, and finally the best way to save money of electricity is to go solar and we can help you with that.