Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Holy Electricity Bill Batman!!!!

I was shocked and amazed recently by a neighbors electricity bill.  We have the same size house as far as square footage, the only differences are smaller kitchen and floor design inside her house is different.  Now my electric bill even in the hottest peak of the summer never went over $165.00, hers was over $300.  So I wanted to explore reasons for the differences so maybe they can help others reduce their bill.

tips to reduce your electricity bill:
  1. get sunscreens:   I currently do not have sunscreens because they can be expensive to have install.  However if you are handy there are kits at Home Depot you can buy to install yourself.  I am pretty handy but not patient enough for the kit....maybe later.
  2. keep blinds and/or curtains closed:  Since I do not have sunscreens I keep my curtains and blinds closed for the bulk of the day, if not all day! This keeps the heat out and cool air inside.  Windows that do not have direct sun or all day sun I will open for light.
  3. control that thermostat:  I never and will repeat never have my A/C below 80 degrees and typically keep it at 82 degrees.  Sounds warm...not at all I keep cool air flowing with ceiling fans that run far cheaper than your A/C plus a ceiling fan reduces the air temp by about 15 to 20% because it is reducing skin temperature. Ceiling fans cost about $0.04 to run per day vs A/C which can run anywhere from $5 to $15 per day depending at temp you keep it.
  4. surge protectors:  Can't say it enough. Put your tv's, dvd players, game units like Wii or Xbox etc, on a multi-plug surge protector that has an on/off switch.  Make sure the surge protect is for high energy units and HD tv's if you have HD tv's.  When you shut off your tv's or game units they are constantly draining power because the manufacturers have created a standby system in the unit this costs you money.  It is sucking power all day when you are work or are not using it.  So put these units on heavy duty surge protectors and when not in use shut it down then flip the switch.
  5. handy switch: I use this outlet plug for units that do not require a surge protect but drain power because anything let plugged in drains power.
  6. unplug things not in use: I will unplug my toaster and blender when I am not using it.  Leaving it plugged it just costs more money because it is constantly draining power even though it is not on.
  7. shut the computer off when not in use: I even shut of my wireless modem when not in use.
  8. get solar outdoor lights instead of hardwired lights to illuminate your house or driveway
  9. energy efficient light bulbs
  10. seal them cracks:  You bill will be reduced greatly when you seal your house from air leaking out cracks.  During the day close blinds, turn off lights and look at your exterior doors if you can see sunlight  where you shouldn't...well that means air and pests are getting in and out. Weather strip it!  Check air ducts for leaks, walls, windows, and especially outlets. 

Those are just some of the more simple tips to reduce your bill by $50 to $100, if you are consistent.
Here are some surge protectors and outlet switches I have used.  You may want to invest in some appliance outlet surge protectors as well, not to shut down your fridge or stove when not at home but to protect it from power surges.  Newer appliances such as refrigerators, washer/dryers and dishwashers have sensitive computer hardware such as motherboards that do not handle power surges.  Protect that investment.

Hope you try at least one of the tips if not all to reduce that bill!

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