Summer energy is high and so is your electricity bill. With a variety of ways to conserve energy, it makes sense to start with no cost ways to lower your electric bill.
Energy conservation techniques vary tremendously. Depending on who you talk to, the tips you’ll receive for saving money on electricity will vary as well – depending on their expertise and agenda.
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Personally, I consistently save on my electricity bill by doing exactly what I suggest below. Here’s my electricity bill.
There are 9 ways you can save big on your electricity bill. Conserve energy and save money starting today, free of any cost.
Close your blinds
The sun warms everything it hits, turning home goods into radiators and increasing your energy use.
Summer energy from the sun is higher than in other seasons. This requires an equal amount of energy use from your air conditioner (ac power) to offset it and keep your home at your AC temperature setting.
Closing your blinds reduces the AC power demand from your air conditioner. The air conditioner will run less frequently to meet the AC temperature, saving summer energy usage.
If you enjoy natural lighting from the sun, close the blinds before you leave and open them when you return.
Turn on your ceiling fans
Heat rises. This energy conservation technique might sound counterintuitive but it will save money on your electric bill.
Turn your ceiling fans on and run them on a low setting. Your thermostat will sense the cooler air being circulated, not the warmer air 4 feet off the ground (where it is mounted).
Not only will this technique conserve energy, it will provide a more comfortable and consistent AC temperature throughout the room with less “hot spots”.
Don’t cut down the tree
If you’re thinking about cutting down a tree shading your home, don’t do it (unless it is a safety concern of course).
The sun warms everything it hits. Trees make a great barrier between the sun and your home (and your electric bill).
Cutting down a tree shading your home will increase the heat load and your electricity bill.
If you must cut one down, start closing your blinds to offset the increased energy resources required to meet the additional cooling demand.
Close the vents
This energy conservation technique will significantly decrease the energy use of your home.
The air conditioning vents that supply air are located in most rooms. If you don’t spend much time in your closet, basement, office, cupboard or guest bedrooms, close the vents in these rooms.
The AC temperature air coming out of these vents will be redirected to more efficiently cool the rooms you use.
If you choose to close vents in rooms with thermostats, set the AC temperature in those rooms higher, say to 8o degrees, then shut the door.
AC Temperature Setback
One energy saving tip especially important to reduce summer energy use and save on your electric bill is this one.
When you leave the house, before you grab your keys, get in the habit of setting the thermostat back a few degrees, say from 72 to 75. Then, when you return home, do the opposite.
Initially you might return home and think it is too hot.
Resist the temptation to lower the thermostat setting when you arrive home. Remember, it was hot outside, your heart rate is higher, so naturally it will take a few minutes for you to cool off.
You can also change the settings on a programmable thermostat to do this setback automatically. Instructions to do this can easily be found online.
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Wash your clothes with cold water
When it comes to energy use and washing machines, the best energy saving tip is to wash your clothes with cold water.
Not only does washing with cold water extend the life of your clothes, it requires a fraction of the energy to get the job done.
A big piece of the energy your home uses is to heat water. Using the cold-water setting requires no energy because does not get heated.
Use a drying rack
Here’s another energy saving tip for your laundry routine.
Using a drying rack not only extends the life of your clothes, particularly delicates and athletic wear, it requires no home energy use to get the job done.
The most inefficient way to heat anything is with electricity. So every load of laundry that does not need to be dried in the dryer saves a tremendous amount of energy and lowers your electricity bill.
Air dry the dishes in the dishwasher
Again, the most inefficient way to heat anything is with electricity. To lower your electric bill, air dry the dishes in your dishwasher by opening the door once the washing cycle ends. Leave the dishwasher door open overnight to avoid any inconvenience and wake up to clean, dry dishes.
The side benefits of this energy conservation technique are reduced dishwasher smells, your dishwashing cycles run more efficiently and eased dishwasher cleaning as food residues will not be baked onto the interior.
Close the doors
In combination with the energy conservation tips of closing air conditioning vents and setting back the AC temperature, closing interior doors in unused rooms will lower your electricity bill.
Additionally, consider adding interior door sweeps to the bottom of these doors to completely seal the rooms from the rooms you frequently occupy and would like to keep cool.
To see how much money you save using these tips, here’s the savings calculator:
- Look at your most recent electricity bill and find your billing period
- Implement all of these tips consistently for 1 month.
- On your next electricity bill, find how much electricity (kWh) you used
- Compare this number to the last year’s bill for the same month
This savings calculator technique will give you a good idea of the energy you saved by using the 9 tips to save on your electricity bill.
There are other factors that are not considered (like the weather data), but for this exercise, it’s close enough to verify these energy conservation tips are worth continuing.
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