10 Ways to Save on Utilities
The drive towards “living green” is stronger than ever. Go online, and you’ll find dozens of articles persuading you to cut down on wasted energy sources. What should be emphasized for greater effect is how much money you’ll save in the long run.
Everyone can enjoy the power of green when they start making their home energy efficient. If you’re struggling with utility bills, then maybe these tips can help you.
Energy Efficient Lightbulbs
Compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) use 70 to 80% less energy than regular bulbs. The average lifetime of a CFL can be anywhere from 6,000 to 15,000 hours. Cut back on light replacement purchases by using energy saving bulbs on fixtures you frequently use.
Bitter winter months can drive up heating bills despite keeping all your windows tightly closed. Cold temperatures can still emanate from window panes. Putting a clear plastic film on your windows will block the cold from affecting your indoor heating.
Change Air Filters
Anyone with an air conditioning system knows how much dust can accumulate with each cycle. These build-ups will make you A/C unit work harder, using up more energy. Give proper attention to air filters whether they be disposable ones from Filtrete or built-in ones that can be cleaned by a vacuum hose. Also, keep furniture and other objects away from ventilation ducts to reduce debris.
Install Ceiling Fans
Ceiling fans might seem outdated for some people, but they provide a feasible alternative to A/C. They take less energy to run, especially on mild days, and can be set to clockwise and counterclockwise rotations to bring in hot or cold air. Standing electric fans also achieve the same purpose.
Whether you wash clothes at a laundromat or at home, clothes dryers tend to eat up a hefty chunk of change. Woolen dryer balls cut down the amount of time it takes to dry clothes.
Re-Tool Your Water Heater
Water heaters are installed at the factory pre-set of a scalding 140 degrees. Keeping your water heater at this setting can cost you between $36 and $61 per year. Turning it down to 120 will cut these costs in half.
Do Nightly Chores
People usually save their laundry and cleaning chores for the morning and mid-day. Energy suppliers consider those time slots to be peak hours for home appliance use. Running your appliances during the evening cuts down on these expenses.
Call your utility company to inquire about discount programs that encourage responsible energy consumption. Power companies could average your bills to a flat-rate with no extra costs depending on where you live, whether it’s in Calgary or Brampton.
Optimize Internet Speed
Internet usage is the biggest energy vampire of them all. Setting your computer at a basic speed of 20 megabits per second is enough. This will also save you $120 per year.
Unplug Unused Appliances
Every item that plugged in, but turned off, still gets a “phantom charge.” Determine which appliances should remain plugged in and which shouldn’t. Power strips are another way to regulate electricity.