Paying the electric bill can be a headache, especially during the summer and winter months when it seems as if you’re running the air conditioner and heater non-stop just to stay comfortable. Plus, if you’ve got faulty appliances, or electronics that lack energy efficiency, your bill can become quite unpredictable — and costly.
Reducing the price of your electric bill doesn’t always have to involve buying green-friendly appliances and energy-conserving outlets. Here are 7 unique ways to tweak your home that will help you save on electric costs.
1. Install a Low-Flow Showerhead
Low-flow showerheads not only save water and protect the environment, but also effectively reduce energy costs due to heating up less water for your shower.
Most local water providers offer rebates and incentives to those who buy low-flow showerheads with the WaterSense label, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. So not only will you save on energy costs, you’ll save on your water bill, too!
2. Use Blackout Curtains
Blackout curtains feature special linings that effectively block out sound and light so you can sleep more peacefully. From an energy-savings standpoint, blackout curtains are also highly effective at keeping out summer heat and trapping in winter heat. As a result, you save on air conditioning and heating costs.
3. Wash Laundry in Cold Water
Hot water may be effective at killing germs and bacteria, but washing everything in hot water forces your appliances to work harder by heating up water. Plus, hot water shrinks certain types of fabrics, causes bright colors to dull and fade, and causes certain stains to set in further. Unless you’re washing rags and other soiled items you don’t really care about, stick to using cold water.
4. Install Motion Detector Lights
Do you often forget to turn out the kitchen light, or do your kids leave bedroom lights on by accident? Consider installing indoor motion detector lights, which automatically turn off when nobody’s around. These types of lights are easy energy-saving solutions, and are often convenient for large families and those who tend to forget to turn off lights.
5. Keep Electronics Unplugged
Unplug all electronics when not in use to save energy costs. Appliances still draw small amounts of power even when switched off, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. This includes your home entertainment system, microwave, toaster, coffeemaker, and other appliances that stay plugged in year-round.
Unplugging every appliance in your home may seem like a huge hassle, and it can be. However, consider plugging electronics into various power strips around your home so you can simply turn off the power strip when you leave the room.
6. Use Computers Wisely
Set up your computer on a desk, table, or another hard, flat surface when in use. This promotes airflow, and prevents your system from overheating — especially if you tend to place your laptop on a pillow, bed, carpet, or your actual lap. Making your computer work harder than it needs to can lead to an uptick in energy costs.
Also, avoid keeping your computer in sleep mode when you step away for long periods of time, and modify your computer’s energy-saving settings for the best results.
7. Clean Your HVAC System Regularly
Your heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system, or HVAC system, must be cleaned no less than once per year to maintain good energy efficiency. Over time, the filter and fan in your HVAC system can become clogged and contaminated and cause the system to work harder at cooling and heating your home.
If you’re not sure how to clean your filter and fan, consider hiring an HVAC expert who can do this for you. The pros of having your HVAC system cleaned regularly far outweigh the cons when it comes to saving money on electricity.
Is your home in need of repairs and fix-ups that could lead to reduced energy bills? Sign up for iRazoo today and earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards to retailers that can help you save on electricity such as Best Buy, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Sears and more. Start earning points today by completing surveys, shopping online, and searching the Web.