30+ Ways to Lower Electric Bill 

How to lower electric bill: I've compiled this list of 30+ ways to lower electric bill, because let's face it, we all dread it when that electric bill arrives each month - especially if you're in a home!  I have been able to lower my electric bill substantially by making some changes! Here's how my bill list went in order of high to low: Mortgage, Food/Dining/Groceries, Electric Bill. I would venture to guess that your Electric bill is probably 3rd or 4th on your list as well. So, we need to nip this large debt in the bud! The list below will show you how to save electricity and lower that bill! Even if you don't do them all, perform as many of these energy saving tips as you can, and watch that bill shrink.




WAYS TO LOWER ELECTRIC BILL:

Things That You Can Do Now

How to Lower Electric Bill
  1. Close your blinds/shades/curtains in the summer to keep your rooms cool.
  2. Turn off your lights during the day and use natural light/sunlight.
  3. Wash as many loads of clothes as possible with cold water (I do this for all but my white clothes). Tide carries a laundry detergent specially formulated for washing white clothes in cold water. 
  4. Do not wash your dishes until the dishwasher is full.
  5. Air dry your dishes even if you use a dishwasher.
  6. Do not wash your laundry unless you have a full load.
  7. If possible, do your chores that require appliances (i.e., dishwasher, washing machine, clothes dryer) in the evening. These appliances generate heat and cause the A/C to work harder.
  8. Make certain that all windows and doors are closed when the heat or air conditioning are on in your home.
  9. Change your computer’s settings to “Power Saver.” In Windows, go to the Control Panel/Personalization/Change Screen Saver, and click on “Change Power Settings.”  Select the Power Saver option. This will put your computer into sleep mode when not in use and save power, yet any programs you had open will still be open when you “awaken” your computer.
  10. Turn off lights, computers, monitors, dvd players and such when you’re not in the room, or do not plan to return for awhile.
  11. If you have any vents on the floor, do not block them with furniture.
  12. Change all the bulbs in your home to energy efficient bulbs. CFLs-compact fluorescent bulbs last about 10 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs, and LED-Light Emitting Diodes bulbs last 25 times as long.
  13. Lower the thermostat on your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
  14. Set your A/C thermostat to 78 degrees or higher when home and combine the A/C with use of a ceiling fan that turns counter-clockwise.
  15. Using dimmers saves electricity by lowering light levels.
  16. Install door sweeps or Double Draft Stops on exterior doors.
  17. Purchase a water heater blanket if your unit is over 5 years old.
  18. Purchase a thermal leak detector (@$45) to find drafts on windows and outlets so that you know where to seal.
  19. Seal up all cracks, windows and doors with caulk and/or weather stripping to prevent drafts or air from getting in.
  20. Install programmable thermostats.
  21. Once a month, clean or replace the filters on your furnaces and air conditioners.
  22. Reduce what’s called Phantom/Vampire Power: Either unplug items when not in use, or purchase a lot of Power Strips and use them. Plug multiple devices that do not need to stay on around the clock (like televisions, toasters, fans, tabletop lamps, etc.) into these power strips, and then turn them off when not in use. Do not plug things like refrigerators, freezers, digital clocks, dvr’s, etc. into them. Also, for instance, let’s say that you have a guest room with lights, tv, dvr, clock/radio, night light, etc.  There is no need to leave all of these items plugged in year-round when this room is only used occasionally. To save money, unplug all of these items, and only plug them in when you’re expecting overnight guests. Or, if you have a spare refrigerator or freezer in the garage that barely has anything in it, stop using it, and unplug it until you really need it.
  23. Make certain that your attic is well insulated.
  24. Use solar fixtures outdoors for landscaping lighting and decorating.
  25. The use of timers and photocells outside helps to save electricity by turning the lights off when you’re not using them.
  26. Place plastic film over windows (to lessen the heat penetration) on the sides of the house/unit that get the most sunshine.
  27. Close your fireplace and the flue on your chimney.
  28. Even if you have Central Air Conditioning, you can oftentimes save money by using an EnergyStar window unit A/C in an area that can be closed off by doors (or accordion doors – get creative), instead of cooling an entire level of your home – simply cool the room(s) that you spend the most time in.
  29. Call your Electric Company and ask if they do Free Home Energy Audits. Even if they don't, ask them if they can refer someone, and/or if they offer free Energy Conservation classes. Also, they will sometimes inform you of these types of classes with inserts enclosed with your electric bill.
  30. Use electric space heaters and electric blankets only when you’re awake and only if you feel that you can use them safely! You should always have fire extinguishers on hand when using these types of items.
  31. Purchase and install a smart thermostat. With these types of thermostats, you can adjust your settings from the internet and/or a smartphone. They can also detect when you are and are not home and manually adjust the temperature. You will also be notified when a filter change is needed. You may need to have it professionally installed. One of the best and most popular units on the market is the Nest Learning Thermostat (see below).
  32. Air can leak in through outlets. To prevent this, you have a few options:
  • Purchase Electric Outlet Sealers that are fire retardant, plastic foam gaskets, and come in size 2-1/2”width  X 4” height.  Shut off the power from your breaker, remove the outlet cover, then place these around the outlets to prevent air from seaping in; replace the outlet cover, and once you’ve completed all outlets, turn the power back on.
  • Shut off the power from your breaker, remove the outlet cover, then spray foam insulation around the outlets to prevent air from seaping in; replace the outlet cover, and once you’ve completed all outlets, turn the power back on.
  • Caulk around the outlet plate, and insert Safety Plugs into the outlets that are not in use.


WAYS TO LOWER ELECTRIC BILL:

Things That You Can Do Later

Ways to Lower Electric Bill

1.  Buy Energy Star Appliances and Bulbs for any future appliances or fixtures you purchase. You can look for the Energy Star label on the appliances prior to purchasing. Check the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency for incentives and rebates that may be available in your area. Look for ENERGY STAR on the labels of items such as:

  • Water heaters 
  • Dishwashers 
  • Refrigerators 
  • Air conditioners 
  • Furnaces 
  • Clothes dryer 
  • Windows 
  • LED bulbs 
  • CFL bulbs 
  • Computers 
  • Monitors 
  • Printers 
  • Scanners 
  • Fax Machines 
  • Copiers 
  • Multifunction Machine


2.  If you’re building a new home or remodeling:

  • Install an A/C and Heating system with Zone systems. It costs more initially, but it will save you tons in the long run. This type of system allows you to heat or cool your home in zones. In other words, you will be able to cool one room, or one section of rooms, instead of the entire downstairs, or the entire upstairs.

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