Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ways to Reduce Your Electricity Bill NOW!

Ways to Reduce Your Electricity Bill NOW!

Turn off all electronics that have a face/clock
I unplug the microwave all of the time now. I found that I have to leave the answering machine plugged in though I could live without it!  Anything that has a light takes energy all of the tie and in many cases you can turn off a bunch of things with a power strip.  For instance, I think my Wii is plugged in all of the time along with the chargers and TV...most all of those have a little light that stays on.  I could save more energy by putting them all on a power strip and turn them off when not using.  Supposedly the power strip itself might use energy, but I guess it remains trapped in the device and not constantly using if it is turned off. 

I tried turning off our TVs with th strips but then I come home and wonder why the remote does not work.  Takes me a while to remember I turned them off.  Even harder for my husband.  I guess we have to make new habits.  I prefer to keep them on until I get back on my energy saving kick!

Unplug the spare/garage refrig.
Nature provided us with refrigeration in the Fall/Winter. Gas grills do wonders as a winter refig. For the summer we could plan ahead and add ice to a cooler-keep outside in the shade on the porch. Our root cellar/basement also provides some cooling for beverages till peak summer months. I keep just a few sodas in the refig and restock every night.

Unload and unplug garage extra freezer (even though it is Energy Star rated)

In preparation for Summer- we bought enough light blocking shades for the front three windows and two sides. Turns out they also help keep Winter drafts out.  This may have been my biggest money saver so far!

Took out all my electric candles from the windows.  I replaced them over the 2009 holiday and they are now dawn to dusk so I feel a little better about it.  I don't really know if they cost that much to keep.

Waited till I had a full load before washing. Instead of one set of sheets I wait till the next laundry week and add the two sets together for one load. I have an energy efficient front load with newer dryer as well.

Manage clothes drying time. Run it back to back and never let it get cold. Use the outside line for clothes hanging. Even dried once by the wood furnace!  I got a basic rope line at the dollar store which I could run in the basement.

We already had a digital programmable thermostat (we use oil so it really does not help on our electric-maybe yours) and even though it was Winter (about the same temps as last year) we keep the thermostat at 70 degrees. We set it to turn real low overnight-rise in temp about 30 minutes before we wake and on for about an hour then off till 30 minutes before home then back off overnight.  The trick is to stay on the programmed settings- often with school snow days I was home and chilly-so I bumped it up a few notches.  I used more.  We probably used more oil than normal during the Winter 2009-10 season.

My April 2009 electric bill is $79.71 And it would have been about $160 compared with the same time the previous year without these changes.

I should slide that extra 80 into my savings and start a vacation ledger!

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