I don't know about you but over the past year my electric rates have went through the roof! Every time I turn around we are getting a rate increase. For several months this was causing havoc on my monthly budget. I became determined to find ways to lower my electric bill. Thankfully, I was able to do just that!
How to Save on Your Electric Bill
1. Call Your Electric Company: This was the first thing I did when my rates started going up. When you call the electric company ask them if there are any programs that your family might qualify for. They will ask you a series of questions to determine what you may or may not qualify for. If your family doesn't qualify for any programs ask about averaging your electric bill so that you pay one flat rate every month. This can save you a few bucks every month.
2. Turn off the Lights: I know this sounds pretty obvious but it's so easy to forget to turn off a light when you walk out of a room. Start making it a habit to turn off lights when you leave the room. When you go to bed at night turn off all outdoor lighting as well. You can set up a motion light if you want to have lighting when someone comes to your house late at night.
3. Don't Use the Dryer: If at all possible hang dry your clothes. Running the dryer especially if you do a lot of laundry can easily increase your monthly usage. Using a clothes line to dry your clothes is an easy way to lower your monthly electric bill.
4. Have a Charging Station: Do you have cell phones, tablets and computer plugged in all over the house? I know at one point we did and I realized it was a little ridiculous to have these items plugged in all the time. Set up one central location in your home, plug in a power surge and all chargers. When something is not being charged make sure to turn off the power surge. This might only save you a couple of dollars per month but any money back in my pocket is fine by me!
5. Switch Lightbulbs: The traditional and less expensive lightbulbs are much more expensive to run. You might want to consider changing out your traditional lightbulbs to compact fluorescent lightbulbs.
6. Limit TV Time: Some homes have 3 or more TV's going at any given time. That is just crazy! Running that many TV's can cost you some big bucks. Start turning off the TV during dinner, when the phone rings, during homework time, when you go to bed and on the weekends limit TV time.
7. Regular Maintenance: Making sure your appliances, heating and A/C unit are up to date and in working order will help to reduce your monthly electric bill. If you have out dated appliances you might want to ask your utility company if they offer a rebate for buying new energy efficient appliances.
8. Use a Programable Thermostat: Using a programable thermostat will ensure that your heater or A/C is only running when you want it to. You can purchase a programable thermostat for under $30 and some electric companies even give them away for free!
9. Go Solar: If you decide to go solar make sure you realize you won't start saving money right away. The long-term savings can be worth the cost of going solar and there are even rebate programs to lower your costs.
10. Maximize Cooking Time: Try to avoid pre-heating the oven when possible. You should also try to cook several meals at one time while the oven is already hot. This will limit the amount of times you have to warm up your oven.