5 Tips to Lower Your Energy Bills this Summer
With electricity costs rising considerably across the country, you’re probably starting to feel a lighter wallet. If you’re already strapped for cash, struggling to meet your current electric bill, or just simply want to keep more of your hard earned money (and honestly, who doesn’t?), we’ve got you covered. While it might be appealing to some to simply go off grid completely and live in the woods, that approach isn’t exactly palatable for those of us attached to modern luxuries like air conditioning and somewhat drinkable tap water. There’s no need to fear, however. In this article, we’ll show you five smart ways to lower your electric bill this summer without leaving the 21st century. By the end of this article, you should even have money to splurge on those overpriced coffees we all love (Starbucks – yum). You can have your coffee and drink it, too.
Use Cold Water
No, not your showers, unless you really want to. However, when it comes to common appliances that use lots of water, like washing machines or dishwashers, you’ll be doing yourself a favor by using the cooler settings. After all, the water heater accounts for as much as 14% of the average utility bill. By giving your dishes and clothes cold showers, you’ll be saving yourself some serious cash over time. Besides, have you ever heard the Tupperware complain about an icy wash?
Turn Up the Thermostat
Sometimes in life, it’s necessary to ask the hard, soul-searching questions. Did I really need to buy that $70 shirt? Was that avocado toast really worth $11.34 plus tax? When it comes to saving on your electric bills, sometimes you have to ask yourself these kinds of questions. Do you really need to have the thermostat set to blast your home with cold every time the temperature gets above 68 degrees? After all, for every degree the thermostat is raised, as much as 8% can be saved on your cooling costs. This is especially true at night; since you’ll most likely be asleep during the nighttime, it makes sense to put the thermostat at a higher level or turn it off completely, before going to bed since you won’t be awake to enjoy the cool air.
Use Your Ceiling Fan
Ceiling fans just don’t get the love they deserve these days. A good ceiling fan lowers room temperature around 4 degrees. This gives you two benefits: you could turn down the thermostat, which cuts down in energy costs, or you could even turn the thermostat off completely.
Avoid Building up Heat
We know you’re probably not running the heater on during the summertime. At least, we hope you’re not. However, a lot of your appliances and devices that you might not expect build up heat inside your house, making staying indoors an unpleasant experience. For example, instead of using the oven or stove, try cooking outside. Instead of running the dishwasher frequently, you could try hand washing your dishes, since dishwashers produce heat, ultimately making it warmer inside. While it certainly doesn’t feel modern to scrub dishes the old-fashioned way, it’s a great way to enjoy a few extra bucks this summer.
While closed blinds and shut blinds look antisocial from a bystander’s perspective, you can actually reduce quite a bit in your cooling costs this way. In fact, reflective blinds can reduce the heat gain of a room by as much as 45 percent, significantly cutting down on air conditioning costs. If you double up with insulated blinds, you can cut costs again once winter rolls around, as insulated blinds can trap heat during the cooler months.
Electric bills are finicky beasts. Oftentimes, it seems like your bill will rise even when you feel like you’re being energy savvy. However, with the five tricks outlined above, you should be able to live the modern life with a lower electric bill this summer.