Creative Ways to Save on Energy Costs
Is your electricity bill very high and do you wonder what you can do to cut it down? Check out our list of 10 creative ways to lower your energy bills throughout the year.
1) Create more shade.
If your home has many west-facing windows, you’re likely getting loads of sunlight inside each afternoon. The heat generated by the sun will make your A/C unit work harder. Lower your energy consumption by installing window shades or planting trees on your property to block the direct sunlight.
2) Go solar.
Consider leasing solar panels. You’ll be given a set monthly cost, which makes budgeting easier year-round. Also, the monthly payment is often a lot less than your local utility bill.
3) Rethink your roof.
Is your roof a sunlight-absorbing black roof? By installing a sunlight-reflecting “cool roof,” you can reduce your roof’s temperature by up to 60 degrees. This could trim your A/C use by as much as 20%.
4) Keep your cool.
Large, heat-generating appliances can warm up a room quickly. Consider running your washing machine and dishwasher at night or in the early morning when it’s cooler outside.
5) Lighten up.
Replace your light bulbs! By swapping out just five incandescent light bulbs in a high-traffic area of your home with CFL or LED bulbs, you can save about $65 on annual energy costs. The new bulbs also last much longer.
6) Seal all drafts.
If your home isn’t a new build, you may have drafty windows and doors. To check for drafts, try the candle test. Shut down your A/C unit, and close all doors and windows. Hold a lit candle near the windows and exterior doors of your home. If the flame moves, that will indicate an airflow, which means a drafty seal.
7) Get smart.
By installing a smart thermostat, your home will be programmed to cool off at exactly the times you need.
8) Pull out the plug.
Up to 75% of energy consumption by home electronics happens when they’re turned off. Save big by pulling out the plugs when you’re done with your electronics. For example, make it a habit to unplug your desktop computer before you go to bed each night.
9) Fire up the grill.
Rather than using your oven in the summer, fire up your outdoor grill for dinner prep. You’ll keep the heat out and enjoy the sunshine at the same time!
10) Laundry smarts.
About 90% of the energy used when doing laundry comes from heating the water. When possible, choose the cold setting on your washing machine. Hanging your clothes to dry will also trim your bill. If you must use the dryer, put some clean, unused tennis balls in there — this will prevent your clothes from clumping, which makes for faster drying.