Now that Memorial Day has passed, the unofficial start of summer is here. With that being said, you will probably see an increase in your electricity bill over the next several months due to increasing temperatures.
However, I am here today to help you save money on electricity costs this summer. I’m sure most of you would rather use that money for something else anyways!
While some of the tips below may seem obvious to some of you, I know plenty of others who spend hundreds of dollars a month on cooling costs and waste tons of electricity that they don’t need to be wasting.
As most of you know, we moved to Fruita, Colorado a little over three months ago. The weather here isn’t cold like most people think when they think of Colorado and this is because Fruita is in the high desert. We’ve had plenty of warm, sunny and beautiful days. Due to this, we’ve been mindful of the electricity we are using since we’ve already had some pretty hot days.
Even though the temperature here is somewhat similar to the temperatures we often experienced in St. Louis, Missouri, we’ve already noticed a big difference in our monthly electric bills.
Our electric bills in St. Louis in the spring were usually around $100 a month, whereas here they have been around half that. While some of the difference is due to the low humidity here in Colorado so the weather here actually feels great, a lot of the savings is due to us trying different things to save more money on our electric bill.
There are many positives of doing this. Not only do we save money by controlling our summer cooling costs, but we are also using less electricity. Lately, we have been more mindful of the amount of electricity, water, and gas that we use more than ever, as we are trying to do our part for the environment.
Below are my tips on how you can save money on electricity costs:
1. Keep your air conditioner off as long as possible.
We’ve only turned on our air conditioner once or twice in our new house. Yes, I understand that it’s still just the end of May, but we are determined to keep our windows open as long as we can.
Truth is, I LOVE having the windows open. No matter how hot it gets, I love having a nice, fresh breeze come into the house. It also saves a ton of money and electricity!
This summer, I challenge you to keep your air conditioner off as long as you can. I don’t have any prizes to give out, but knowing that you managed to save money and save electricity should be good enough.
2. Use a programmable thermostat.
A programmable thermostat is something you should invest in if you haven’t yet. It’s relatively cheap and you will most likely make your money back within a year, or maybe even just a few months.
With a programmable thermostat, you can set the temperature at exactly what you want it to be for different times throughout the day. This way you don’t have to constantly change it as it will automatically change on a set schedule.
This way, when you leave for work, your AC will automatically turn up so that you don’t waste electricity or money cooling a house that no one is in. You can also program it for while you are sleeping, for the weekend, and so on.
I did a simple online search and I was able to find plenty of programmable thermostats for less than $50. Well worth the small investment.
3. Use fans to save money on electricity costs.
If you have ceiling fans, portable fans, etc., then you should use them. It can make the room you are in feel much cooler. This will then allow you to set your AC at a couple of degrees higher so that you can save more money.
When you are not in the room though, you should always turn off the fan though as it’s just a waste of electricity if no one is in the room.
4. Set your thermostat at a higher temperature.
I couldn’t find information on what the average person sets their thermostat at, but I did recently come across a Facebook status where over 100 people chimed in about what temperature their AC is set at during the summer. Many of the commenters stated that their AC is set below 72 degrees. Some stated that they keep their home at a cool 67 degrees.
To save money, I recommend setting your thermostat at 76 to 78 degrees when you are home, and then when you are going to sleep or if no one is home then you may want to raise it a few degrees.
Doing this may save you around 10% or more on your next electric bill.
5. Limit the amount of sunlight that comes into your home.
The more sunlight that comes in, the hotter your home is going to be. If you don’t want it to be dark in the room, then close all of the blinds and curtains everywhere else and open up the blinds in just the room you are in.
It’s really that easy.
6. Spend more time in your basement.
Basements are usually considerably cooler than the rest of a home. If you have a basement, using it may mean that you can keep the rest of your home warmer. This can be a great way to save money on electricity.
I know someone who even moves their bedroom into the basement each summer so that they can enjoy a cooler house on a lower budget. It’s a great idea!
7. Cook and do chores at night time.
If you are able to, you might want to try completing certain chores at night time when the temperature has dropped a little bit.
This can include turning on the dryer, cooking hot meals and so on. During the day, you could always cook other meals that don’t need the oven. The dryer and stove can really heat up a home and waste the electricity you are spending to cool your home down.
8. Take care of your air conditioning system.
In order to save money, you may have to spend money as well.
You should always take care of your air conditioning system, as routine maintenance can help it run better and also help the system last longer. This means replacing the filter and completing maintenance on the actual system on an annual basis, clearing leaves off the outside of the system, and so on.
How much money do you typically spend on cooling costs in the summer months? What do you do to save money on electricity costs?