Turn off the lights
This is a no-brainer: Turn off those lights! Make it a reflex that you always flip the switch when you leave a room. If you must, leave sticky notes around your house as a reminder. Soon, turning off the lights will become habit. This will save a lot of money on your next electricity bill, and it is such an easy task. Use natural light when you can, and avoid turning lights on altogether.
Unplug your electronics
If you’re not charging your phone or laptop, unplug it from the wall. Leaving plugs in still uses energy and can add to your bill. Even if it’s just thirty dollars a year, that is thirty dollars you could have used for something else. Consumer reports have shown that the average computer user can save around $50 a year, solely by turning the computer to off instead of standby. If you use power strips, you can turn off everything at once.
Keep the AC to a minimum
Install fans. Not only do these help cool the house, they also keep the air circulating so the air conditioning does not have to work as hard. Fans can make the room feel cooler without the AC. Protect your windows from the sun’s heat with curtains and blinds. Sealing up the house can also keep the temperature right. Use caulk to fix up any cracks near doors and windows. Don’t cool a house that’s empty. If you can program your thermostat, do it! Close doors on rooms you aren’t using and turn off the AC if you’re not home. It takes three times the amount of energy to cool a room than heat a room, so only use the air conditioning when it is really necessary. Fans and open windows can allow you to keep the AC off when the weather permits.
Don’t use your dryer
If the weather is nice, hang your clothes outside and let Mother Nature do the work. Line drying your clothes can seriously reduce your electricity bill. If you don’t have room outside to dry your clothes, try hanging them in the laundry room or bathroom.
Make a list of energy-using devices
Know where your money is going. It’s easy to forget about certain items like alarm clocks and chargers that use energy. Keep track of every item in your home, so you can remember to unplug it. This will help keep inventory of all the energy-using devices in your home. Most are surprised by the amount of things they actually have plugged into their outlets. Often people don’t realize that a plugged in television in an unused bedrooms still uses energy even though no one is watching it. You should also look at each individual appliance and determine its energy efficiency. Sometimes an old AC unit can raise your electric bill. Pay attention to the amount of energy your refrigerator, microwave, stove, and other kitchen appliances are using. Use a smaller refrigerator if you find you don’t need all of the space. If you’re using older appliances, chances are they are requiring more energy. Technological advances are very energy efficient, so it may be worth it to spend the extra money on updated appliances.
Use hot water sparingly
Most clothing items do not need to be washed in warm water. Washing your clothes in cold can save up to $150 a year. Why not consider hand washing some of your dishes? Running the dishwasher often uses more hot water than needed. Do not wash dishes or clothes unless the machine is full. Take quicker showers and avoid letting the water run.
Many of these changes are not particularly difficult. If you are willing to make a few lifestyle changes, lowering that electric bill can be easy!