If your energy bill is going through the roof, this article will give you ten useful tips for how to save money on electricity at home. To ensure that you reduce your energy consumption by as much as possible, try to implement as many of them as you can.
1. Take advantage of off-peak hours pricing – In many cities, the power company has specific times of the day that are labeled as off-peak hours and on-peak hours. During off-peak hours, the price of electricity will be at it’s lowest.
For example, I live in South Florida. In examining the Time Of Use Rates schedule for my area, I discovered that during the Summer months off-peak hours range from 6 a.m. to noon, and 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. And during Winter months, the off-peak hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Knowing these hours makes it easy for me to determine the best times to operate appliances and perform certain chores. You should find out the off-peak hours for your area. Then post those hours in your wash room and other strategic places around your home to remind you and your family of the best times to run those machines.
2. Install a water heater timer – With a water heater timer, you can set the time frames for when the water heater will work its magic. However, my research has disclosed that you’ll only get noticeable savings if you have a large family or set the timer to match the off-peak electricity hours discussed above.
3. Use the microwave to heat things – It can take a while for your stovetop to crank up the heat long enough to get water boiling. So one good alternative is to use your microwave oven. It uses less electricity and gets things hot a lot faster. Of course, if you don’t or can’t use a microwave, then keep the pan covered on the stovetop to help keep heat from escaping.
4. Install a programmable thermostat – Your heating and air conditioning system is one of the biggest energy hogs in your home. One way to help it operate more efficiently is to get a programmable thermostat. It’s one of the best investments you could make. A programmable thermostat will allow you to set exactly the temperatures and times of day when your heating and cooling unit will turn on and off. This is especially beneficial when you’re away from home.
5. Use only cold water for washing clothes – To get hot water for your washer, it requires electricity. That cost money. But if you wash your clothing in cold water, that’s money saved. I use cold water washing all the time and I see no difference in my laundry. Yes, I do my own…lol Also, having a washer that is Energy Star approved can save you money.
6. Avoid partial loads – The math is pretty simple on this one. If you tend to wash lots of little loads of clothes and dishes, your appliances will consume a lot more electricity than if you wait until the dish and clothes washers are full before running them.
7. Turn off those darn lights – We both know that lights consume lots of electricity, especially if you aren’t using energy-saving lightbulbs. So do yourself a favor and turn them off when exiting rooms. You can also install indoor lights with motion detectors that will automatically turn them on and off.
In addition, keep blinds and drapes open for a long as possible to naturally light a room before artificial lighting has to be used.
8. Shut off or unplug electronics and non-essential appliances – Your cell phone charger, computer equipment, coffee maker, stereo gear, etc., are all slowly but surely sipping at the energy trough. Some of them continue sipping even when they appear to be shut off. So walk around your home and unplug appliances and equipment you rarely use. If you have a bunch of them plugged into a power strip, that will make them easier to turn off.
And if you live in area where there are lots of lighting strikes, unplugging them will also prevent any power surge damage.
9. Dry your clothes outside – Some clothes dryers can easily run continuously for an hour and still not completely dry your clothes. That’s a lot of energy being used to both heat the dryer’s drum and keep it rotating. So if you’re able to dry your clothing outside, that can save you a nice bit of money. And if this isn’t possible, replace your dryer with one that has an Energy Star rating.
10. Avoid electricity completely where possible – Compared to natural gas, propane, and other natural resources, electricity is more expensive. So if you can install or purchase appliances and equipment that consume these natural resources it will have a positive impact on your energy bill.
Hopefully, you found these ideas for how to save electricity at home to be helpful. There’s really no magic to achieving significant savings. It’s more about being conscious of when electricity is being consumed and which items are draining your wallet the most.