Did you know you can easily shrink a good portion of your electric bill by following a few no-brainer tips? Check out these five we came up with:
5. Change out your light bulbs to compact fluorescents (CFLs)
You probably know this, but here’s a reminder: traditional light bulbs consume up to four times as much energy as CFLs and contain more mercury. And let’s face it — they’re so 20th century.
Yes—they might be a little more expensive, but remember that each CFL in your house saves about $30 over its lifetime, and usually pay for itself within six months. How can you possibly argue with this?
4. Wash your clothes in cold water…then hang-dry them
Whoa—this borders on a first-world problem, but washing your clothes in cold instead of hot or warm water then drying them on a clothesline to dry is actually a smart thing to do.
For one thing, you’re abstaining from using your hot water heater, which is the often the most energy sucking appliance in your home. Can you guess the second most energy-sucking appliance? That’s right—the electric dryer. Hey, think of the extra money you’ll save on those first-world dryer sheets!
3. Turn off electronics you’re not using.
It sounds too simple to be true, but it’s true. And it’s simple.
When you leave a room, turn off the light and/or fan. When you’re done charging your phone or iPad, unplug the charger. After a night of watching movies, don’t just turn off the TV and stereo—turn off the entire power strip (or better yet, invest in a smart strip).
In other words, beware of energy vampires.
2. Run your dishwasher only when it’s full
Dishwashers are a miraculous invention of modern times. They’re quiet, take up little space and they save precious resources like water, electricity and time.
But heating dish water to hot is costly, therefore dishwashers are only truly awesome when they’re run full of dishes. If not, you’re just wasting your money.
1. GO SOLAR!
We saved the best for last, of course. Installing a photovoltaic system on your home will virtually eliminate your electric bill, and you can’t get much better than that.
Going solar—or “asserting your energy independence” as we like to call it—isn’t as tough you might think. Flexible financing options these days make it possible to put little or no money down on a slick new system. Plus, costs are steadily coming down.
Keep in mind that even with solar power in your home, we still recommend you follow the tips above. It’s not just about saving money—it’s the right thing to do for the planet!