I have always had super low bills. It’s not hard to reduce the cost of electricity while still having a comfortable lifestyle. A few years ago, I did a seminar for lawyers on ways to save money. I had my most recent electricity bill up on the screen and they squealed asking how I got it so low. Here are my tips.
Turn everything off when not in use
Turn everything off at the power point. In the USA you need to unplug it, in Australia, we have a switch at the wall to turn it off like a light switch. Go through your home and turn off everything you don’t need on such as the washing machine, microwave, toaster, gaming consoles, your computer, chargers (unless they are charging a device), lights, heaters etc.
How many devices do you have plugged in, using power when you don’t need them on?
Hang your clothes instead of using the dryer
I don’t even own a dryer anymore and whenever I have, my bills have suffered. The last unit I lived in had one. The only difference between that unit and this one was the dryer and my electricity bills have halved. The dryer uses more electricity than you might think! If you have access to a clothes line, hanging your clothes can reduce wear and tear. Make sure you hang them inside out and bring them inside once dry to reduce fading. If you have white clothes with stains, the sun is excellent for removing them.
Check out 8 tips to dry your clothes in winter.
Turn lights off
Whenever you leave a room, turn the lights off. Teach your kids to sleep in the dark instead of having lights on overnight or get solar lights you take out during the day and they bring into their room at night.
Be as energy efficient as possible
Get energy efficient appliances. Only use your appliances when needed and ensure dishwashers, washing machines etc have full loads.
Use a thermos when making tea and coffee to keep it hot longer instead of wasting cups or needing to reboil the kettle because it goes cold.
Check how much things cost to use in your home and decide if you want to continue to use them as often as you do.
Allow your hair to air dry a little to reduce the amount of time blow drying it.
Switch to energy efficient light bulbs.
Switch to gas if you can as it is cheaper.
Clean filters in all appliances to ensure they run efficiently.
Seal the gaps
Go through your home and check for gaps such as around door frames, windows and behind appliances. Seal the gaps to keep heat in during winter and the cold out or keep the cold in and heat out during summer. You can get tape to do this easily around doors and windows.
Seal vents when not in use as well. I blocked off all central heating vents when they weren’t being used and this helped reduce the bill in one of our homes.
If you have to use electricity, can it be used for more than one thing? For example, in winter if you are cooking with the oven, cook more than one thing at a time and do it of an evening to keep the home warmer.
If you need to cook in summer, try using your BBQ or slow cooker outside to keep the house cooler.
When heating or cooling the home, block of areas so you only heat or cool the room you are in.
Dress down in summer and rug up in winter. For winter have jackets, scarves, dressing gowns, put socks on your feet, wear ugg boots and get microwavable heat packs to warm yourself up. If you use the heater, set a timer and make sure you switch it off minutes before you leave instead of leaving it heating until the moment you leave. You can save 15 to 30 minutes each time you are using it doing it this way.
Find other hobbies
Instead of sitting in front of the TV, playing on your phone or computer, find something else to do. The amount of electricity our homes use because of TV, computers and charging devices is scary. Play games as a family. Read a book. Go for a walk to explore your local area, hang out with friends, go do something!
Keep the fridge and freezer full
Even if it means filling up water bottles to store in there, keeping your fridge and freezer full makes it more energy efficient. Every time you open the door, cold air escapes. If the fridge or freezer is empty, it takes a while to cool the air again once the door is closed. If it is full, most of the cool air stays in, reducing the amount of power used to keep it the right temperature.
Make changes to the home
Install fans and use them as they are cheaper than air conditioning plus can be used in winter to push hot air down.
Insulate your home to regulate the temperature.
If you live in a hot climate, install a whirlybird to remove hot air from your roof cavity and even out the temperature in your home.
Get garden smart. Select plants which will keep your home cool in summer and warm in winter.
How do you reduce your electricity bills?