Electricity is a commodity, and it’s getting more expensive as time goes on. Many people are shocked to open their electric bill and wonder what makes their bill so high. You may wonder if small changes in your usage habits make a difference, and if so, what they are. While there are some things you can’t easily change – the size of your home, the temperature outdoors, or the rates your electric company charges you, there are many things you can do to lower your electricity bill without sacrificing comfort or way of life. The key is to be consistent in your changes and to make them a habit. It may be helpful to make yourself a list in order to cement these changes in your mind. Getting your family involved Can make a difference, too, and can even be fun. Ask the kids “How low can we make the electric bill?” and remind them of the things you can do with the money you save!
- Turn the heat or air-conditioning down when you’re not home
- Unplug chargers and other electronic devices
- Turn off the lights when not in use
Many people believe it’s best to leave the temperature at one setting all the time. But with many people gone from their house for many hours, this can be a huge waste of money! In the winter, set the thermostat at 60 while you’re gone (or even sleeping) and in the summer, set the air-conditioning at 80. They even make programmable thermostats to make this easier for you.
Make sure you unplug cell phone chargers, computers, televisions and coffee pots when not in use. It takes just a moment, but the savings can be substantial. A bonus to this practice is protection if lightning should strike nearby – no fried electronics!
Many people get in the habit of turning on lights wherever they go in the house, but ask yourself if it’s really necessary. Would a nightlight in the bathroom work instead? Do you need the porchlight on all night, or would motion detector lights be more fiscally responsible? Don’t forget to turn off the lights when you leave the house. Some people like a lamp lit in the foyer or front room, but otherwise, there’s no need to have your rooms lit up while you’re not using the light. It may encourage you to go to bed earlier, as well, and a little more sleep would help almost anyone!
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