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Electrical Tip of the Day: 10 Ways to save money on your electric bill

This is a great article we thought we would pass along – re-posted with permission from our friends at Change of Address.Org

10 Ways to Save Money On Electricity Bills

It’s that time of year again and as our central air conditioning units work overtime to cool our houses this Summer, our electricity bills start to skyrocket.  It’s not uncommon for a power bill to double through the Summer months and given the heat there is only so much we can do about it.  In a few States with deregulated electricity like Texas you can shop around for lower electricity rates (priced in kilowatts/hour).  If that’s not an option for you (or even if it is) you can still save a bundle on your electricity bills by following these 10 Ways To Save Money On Electricity Bills.

  1. This one is one you hear a lot yet most of us STILL do it.  You should try to not pre-rinse your dishes before putting them into the dishwasher.  Why?  Because you waste hot water and more has to be heated.  This of course applies to people with electric water heaters (you can also buy a gas model to reduce electricity consumption – but then watch your gas bill).
  2. Continuing with dishwashers, you should look into purchasing a new one because the newer generation is so much more energy efficient you can usually pay for the cost of the new dishwasher within one year due to decreased power consumption.  You can also save by avoiding the use of the heat dry option on your dishwasher.
  3. Surprisingly another great way to save money is to simply turn your ceiling fans off when you are not in the room.  For some odd reason people leave ceiling fans running most of the time and especially in a home with central air this should not be necessary.
  4. Lights, lights, and more lights.  C’mon already shutoff the lights when you are not in the room and you don’t need to use lights as much during the daytime.  This is a major pet peeve of mine and simply wastes electricity needlessly.  You should also consider switching to CFL bulbs to both last longer and reduce the amount of electricity that your lights draw.
  5. TV’s are everywhere!  If your home is like my home there is a TV in just about every room and generally the TV’s are on even if nobody is in the room.  Talk about lazy, we can even use the remotes to shutoff the TV’s when we leave the room.  This is a completely unnecessary use of power.
  6. Computers should also be turned off when not being used.  Why do we leave computers on all the time?  Do we expect that they will magically tweet everything going on in the home (I certainly hope not).  They should at least be using the built-in power saving features to turn off monitors, etc. after a few minutes of being idle.
  7. Washing machines can consume a lot of electricity.  Did you know that front-loading washing machines use 50% of the power and 40% less water than top loading wasters?  That’s a pretty ridiculous savings that again can quickly pay off an upfront investment in a newer washer.
  8. Clothes dryers are another power hungry appliance that you simply need to do basic maintenance on.  Make sure to clean the lint filter between each use.  Building up lint doesn’t only cause the machine to be less efficient it’s also a serious fire hazard.
  9. Refrigerator use needs to also be sensible.  Don’t over-cram food into your refrigerator as it makes it work harder to keep the excess cooled.  Also, don’t put hot food directly into the refrigerator (let it cool first).  You should also avoid putting the refrigerator right next to a heat source (like an oven).  Lastly, of course try to use an energy efficient refrigerator if possible.
  10. Ovens can also pull a lot of juice (microwaves, toaster ovens, and electric stoves).  Did you know that food cooks faster when placed as close as possible to the edge of the rotating tray in a microwave?  The faster it cooks the quicker the microwave is shutoff and not consuming as much power.  Also, try to use a toaster oven over a traditional oven when possible to reduce the amount of electricity used.  Lastly, don’t constantly open up the oven to check on food, use the light that’s what it’s there for (so you can see without letting a bunch of heat out of the oven).

Most of these tips are common sense ways to reduce your power bill and they generally help all year long (not just in the Summer).  We  definitely recommend that you keep power consumption in mind (more frequently than every time you receive your electricity bill).

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