Utility bills can be very high. My electric bill during the spring and summer months is usually around $200 and during the winter around $40. There’s many things that I’ve done to lower it to that $200 mark during the hot months, but that’s still so high! My gas bill is the exact opposite of my electric bill in the winter months of course.
Here are some of the things I’ve done or want to do:
- Switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs. My energy provider recently offered energy saving light bulbs for $0.50 a piece and I bought some, but not nearly enough.
- Unplug electronics such as computers, chargers and so on when you are not using them. This consisted of a bulk of our electric bill before, and we have noticed that our bill has gone down since.
- Try to set your thermostat to at least 76 degrees during the summer months and around 68-70 in the winter months.
- Use black curtains in the winter to attract sunlight and use white curtains in the summer to repel sunlight.
- Use ceiling fans in your home. Remember though that ceiling fans do not cool down the room, only the people in it, so it’s wasteful to have the fan on when no one is in there.
- Close vents and shut doors to rooms that you do not use. I’ve heard though that you should never shut more than 15% of the vents in your house.
- And of course, turn off the lights when you are not in the room. My BF used to leave lights on all the time, but now he has finally learned.
- Buy a programmable thermostat
- Buy water efficient shower heads for the bathroom
- Make sure you are constantly checking your utility bills, as one month my electric bill was close to $500, and it turned out that we were paying for our neighbors electricity also! The utility company does make mistakes…
- Make sure your windows are well-insulated also.
One thing that I have been thinking about doing in installing solar panels on my house. I know of a couple who bought solar panels which cost around $20,000 and they put some money down on it and got 0% financing for the life of the loan, and now they pay around $100 a month for the next 5 years. Their electric/gas bill has now dropped to around $30 a month altogether, and this just sounds like such a great way to save and help the earth. They also said that their daily activities are not impacted by the solar panel or anything, so I’m very much thinking about it.
Any other tips for the upcoming winter months?