In the summer months, your electric bill can go up just as fast as the temperature. Here is a quick list of all the things you can do to help minimize your electric bill and the hit your wallet takes each summer.
- Cut down on energy leaks – When you leave a room, turn off the light. If you are not using an appliance (toaster, tv,etc.) unplug it to ensure no energy is being used.
- Use energy saving products – Many items and appliances in your house have energy-saving models. There are CFL or LED light bulbs, energy saving washers, dryers, etc., and more to save you money without doing a thing.
- Keep shades drawn – Sunlight can quickly raise the temperature in a room and the whole house. During the day, keep shades and blinds closed to cut cooling costs.
- Check for proper insulation – Check any areas where cool air may be leaking out of your home. This can be the source of higher bills due to the loss of cool air. You may also check your refrigerator lining to make sure the same does not occur.
- Use air conditioning efficiently – Set your AC to a consistent temp (e.g. 78) and keep it there. You can also turn it off at night and allow a natural breeze to cool your home. And keep heat generating appliance away from the AC thermostat as it can affect the settings.
- Modify your laundry and dishes cycles – Use the cold water cycle to lower the energy used for the water heater. Fuller loads = less loads. You could hang your clothes to dry. For dishes, you can skip the dishwasher dry cycle and do it manually or let them dry naturally.
- Use electricity during off-peak hours – Do your laundry, cooking, etc. early in the morning or late at night. Electric companies often charge less for energy used at these times.
- Ask for electrical bill discounts – Talk to a representative to see if there are any discounts that can be applied to your bill or ask if there is a voluntary direct load control program (see load management) available.
- Install whole house fans – There will be an upfront cost but you will save 50-90% of usual air conditioning costs each year while supporting your health with cleaner air quality.
We hope these tips will help you save some money and enjoy summer a little bit more!