Temperatures tend to climb during the summer months, but this year’s consistent three-digit thermometer readings across the country have also led to soaring electricity bills.
The Energy Information Administration estimates that running air-conditioning accounts for 12% of household energy expenditureAs the heat rises to 100 degrees in unaccustomed places, many of us use air conditioners every hour almost every day.
That is, if you have air conditioning. Record highs in the Pacific Northwest—more than 110 in some cities—have caused residents to scramble for relief because air conditioning is not common, especially in coastal areas. The June highs in Seattle and Portland, Oregon are usually in the 1970s.
But for those of us with air conditioning, the most we can spend 200 USD per month keep cool. It pays to be creative in how and when to use cooling measures in your own home.
25 ways to reduce electricity bills
From low-tech fans to high-tech techniques, to simple maintenance inspections and repairs, these two-plus-one methods to avoid sticker shock caused by electricity bills are worth your effort.
1. Get a free home energy assessment
Many electricity suppliers provide free home energy assessment or home energy optimization kits. Xcel Energy provides services to most of the northern Midwest and mountainous areas of the United States, providing Free virtual visits with family energy team members, And then a free kit to optimize your residential electricity usage.
2. How to seal cracks and leaks to reduce electricity bills
When the heat is high, don’t let any valuable air conditioner escape because of ventilated doors and leaking windows.Use cheap tape to seal the space for these funds loss, the price usually ranges from $9 to $15 Popular websites such as Amazon.
3. Upgrade to efficient equipment with rebates
Although upgrading air conditioning systems, thermostats, and other energy-related systems can be expensive, many electrical companies offer rebate programs. ConEd serving New York City, Provide smart thermostat rebate.
4. If you have a smart thermostat, please use it
For those who already have nest Or other programmable thermostats in your home, take the time to program them.Smart thermostats provide zone and timed heating and cooling, which on average can save most homeowners around 15% cooling fee.
5. Reduce energy consumption
No, not that kind of timeout. In order to reduce electricity bills cheaply, consider adding an outlet timer to the window air conditioner. These useful gadgets The cost is 10 to 20 dollars, will make your home more energy efficient, and limit the amount of “phantom power” (even if your device is not turned on from the socket), which contributes to the monthly energy cost.
6. Become a fan of a fan
In warm months, fans are an effective way to cool down. Compared with air conditioners, running strategically placed fans in the entire home consumes less energy and can use cool nights to provide a natural and pleasant temperature without increasing energy costs.
7. Let Mother Nature do the work
Although typical clothes dryers don’t add much electricity bills themselves (they cost about 100 USD per year Energy), letting the hot dryer run multiple times a week will heat up your living space, causing you (understandably) to turn on the air conditioner. Instead, try to air-dry your clothes whenever possible. Use the outdoor clothesline to enjoy the summer sun and heat.
8. Invest in disposable pipeline cleaning
The main cause of ineffective or inefficient domestic refrigeration may be blockage of the plumbing system. Over the years, debris such as dust, pet hair, and dander can accumulate in the vents, making it difficult for air to flow smoothly in your space. Cleaner ducts = less need to turn on the air conditioner. Fortunately, the maintenance of the HVAC system is very affordable, and a cleaning of the vent only costs a household maintenance budget of US$200-300.
9. Replace the air filter to reduce electricity bills
Air filters do just that-filter out tiny particles and debris that the human eye normally can’t detect. This provides us with clean air circulating in our homes. However, these filters need to be replaced approximately every six months to function properly. A clogged filter inhibits effective air flow and can cause higher energy costs by forcing your air system to work harder to extract air.
10. Run appliances at night
Some power companies charge higher fees during the day (also known as peak hours) and lower fees at night (that is, off-peak hours). It can help you save a few dollars here and there to run larger appliances such as dishwashers, clothes dryers, and washing appliances, while you can also close your eyes. In the hot summer, even saving a few pennies can indeed add up.
11. Turn to LED
Incandescent bulb Release about 90% of energy in the form of heatIn addition, they are usually not energy efficient, enough to make the case switch to LED bulbs. LED bulbs can save consumers up to $75 a month, and they emit almost no heat.
12. Seal the chimney
Sealing your chimney-or at least closing the dampers-can prevent cold air from leaking and hot air from drifting in.There are many different ways to seal a chimney, from one $50 chimney balloon Use plastic to cover the fireplace. Consult a professional to find out what is right for your home to reduce electricity bills.
13. Replacing the window screens for cold air
As we have already mentioned, it is a good idea to use nature when possible to reduce your bills and energy consumption.In this case, use Relatively cheap The new one will make you more inclined to open the windows at night to enjoy the pleasant breeze while preventing bugs from entering.
14. Isolate hidden areas
Anything in your house with a pipe in the back (toilet, sink, etc.) may just sit in an opening in the wall without insulation. This means that in the summer cool air may leak or hot air may leak in. Consult a professional to learn more about how adding insulation behind toilets and sinks can help you improve your energy efficiency by eliminating these air leaks.
15. Breakfast and dinner
Well, not actually. But using the oven wisely can keep your home cool and reduce electricity bills. Cooking in the oven in the morning when it is cool can prevent your home from overheating when cooking at 5 pm. Similarly, using the oven near off-peak hours means operating costs may not be so high.
16. Upgrade blinds
It’s no secret that the rising sun’s windows can cause the room-or the entire house-to heat up beyond comfort. Fragile blinds are not only ineffective, they can also cause your electricity bill to rise.Spend around $30 for a set of blackout curtains Will help you keep your home cool by completely shielding the sun, reducing your need to turn on the air conditioner. This will also save energy.
17. Close the door
If you live in a multi-room house, closing the door of an unused room will consolidate your air conditioning usage into fewer rooms and make that room cooler. Choose one or two rooms to hang out for most of the day, and close the doors of other rooms to naturally create area cooling. A painless way to reduce electricity bills.
18. Use less water
Although most people’s water and electricity bills are billed separately, you can save a penny by paying more attention to your family’s water consumption during the summer (droughts and water shortages are common). Instead of filling up a multi-gallon kid’s pool for kids or furry friends at home, consider using public swimming pools and beaches, many of which cost only a few dollars for admission.
19. Reduce phantom power
The fact that they are still plugged in even if things like lights or TVs are not turned on means that these items may steal “phantom power” from your home and increase your electricity bill. Phantom power refers to the power consumed by an object when it is turned off or on standby. This allows them to open quickly, but it means that your electricity bill will pay. Consider unplugging lights, electrical appliances, etc. when not in use to save the next energy bill.
20. Add energy-saving power board
When you unplug unused objects, consider adding an energy-saving power strip to reduce your bills.Someone estimated that installing energy-saving power boards (only cost 20 to 30 US dollars each) can be Reduce household electricity consumption from 20% to 48%, Which means you have more than just a few dollars in your pocket.
21. Utilize public space
As the worst pandemic passed, many public places, such as coffee shops and co-working spaces, opened again. Working, reading or listening to podcasts in an air-conditioned public space means that you can leave the air-conditioning and turn off the lights in your home for a few hours, saving you 10 to 20 dollars a day, and significantly reducing household electricity consumption, thereby reducing your Energy bills.
22. Lower the temperature of the water heater
The default temperature of the water heater is 140 degrees, a waste of 36 to 61 US dollars per year, according to Department of Energy.
According to the US Department of Energy, reducing the temperature to 120 degrees is completely fine for most people. However, if you or a member of your family suffer from chronic respiratory disease or the immune system is suppressed, it is best to set the water heater to the default temperature.
23. Use a wind baffle to reduce airflow in the door
Using an appropriately named wind plug on your door can further prevent air leakage in your home. Only 8 dollars, You can make the precious cold air better circulate in your space, and will not be wasted due to water leakage in the door. Another painless way to save money.
24. Use exhaust fans
Exhaust fans are those fans that are usually built into your home, such as those above a stove or shower. These fans do a very good job of circulating air and removing moisture and humidity from the air. Even running these fans when not cooking or showering can improve air circulation and reduce the need for air conditioning and electricity.
Owning or renting a house requires various maintenance. In order to keep your space clean and efficient, it can be difficult to track what you do at what time of the year.Refer to the family list, such as This one You can make sure you tick the right box to prepare your home for the warmer months, which may save you some electricity bills throughout the summer.
Colorado writer Christine Jeanne focuses on lifestyle and health. She is a regular contributor to The Penny Hoarder.