I started recently saving money on my electric bill, and wanted to hear if anyone else had ideas, feedback, etc. I switched my energy provider to North American Power (www.napower.com/kdegross). I am literally saving about $20 a month in my small apartment. I didn't even see a difference on my electric bill, and CLandP still handles any problems.
Has anyone else had this success? Any other ideas? Gas is so high in CT, I figured that if I can save on my electric, I am ahead of the game!
By Jenn from CT
It seems silly to repeat the same old admonishments we used in the "energy crisis" when I was a young teenager; BUT sometimes we all forget and waste electricity in ways we don't even think about. Most of us (myself included) could stand to form some new energy habits!
Lights out when you leave the room, and no more lights than you need. If you need to turn on the overhead to get to your chair, then turn the light on by your chair, expend your own energy to go back and turn off the overhead before sitting down. Unplug small appliances and electronics when not in use--inlcuding the chargers you are not using but have plugged in. You can use a power strip for these to make it easier. (Just don't overload the power strip.) All of these draw power, even if we turn them off. You may not want to do everything, such as the TV, so that you don't have to reprogram it every time you use it; but you can live without the clock on most appliances. Turn off your computer, don't just let it hibernate.
If you have an electric water heater, lower the thermostat. If you have electric heating or cooling, adjust the thermostat. At our home, we set it at 68 in the winter, and 78 in the summer. If I want to be warmer in the winter, I put on a sweater. In the summer, if I am too warm, I add a small fan. If your oven is electric, think before you put it on. Can you cook two things at once (tomorrow's supper with tonight's) and then you just reheat in the microwave? In the winter, I also leave the door slightly open when done, to add the warmth to the room. If you use a freezer, and it is not full, freeze some jugs of water. Freezers operate more efficiently if full. Make sure your fridge door closes and seals. Minimize opening it in warmer weather--again, just think about what you will need. When you go in the fridge for the salad ingredients, what else will you need for the meal? Hang clothes to dry them when possible.
If you use a dishwasher, open it after it rinses and let the dishes air dry.
If you like long simmered or baked suppers, re-acquaint yourself with your crock pot. If you are using a crock-pot in the summer, and have a safe place to put it where the heat it throws off won't affect your house (such as a screened porch or garage), try putting it there. Also in the summer, if you cook food in boilling water, be sure to get rid of the water as soon as it is cooked--don't let the pot sit on the stove radiating heat. Cook outside if you can. Cook twice the amount so you will only need to do a quick reheat tomorrow.
Ask your electricity provider if time of day service is available. It means your rate is lower if you use more of your electricty in off-peak times.
I made window quilts for my windows, they are held up with a tension rod. I can raise them to let in light or a nice breeze, I can lower them to keep heat or cold out. I keep throws on the backs of the chairs so in the winter if we get cool in the house you can use it.
I hang clothes to dry instead of using my dryer. I am fortunate enough to have a clothes line outside, but if weather is bad, I use the basement.
In the summer we use the grill outside for most of our meals.
Be romantic. :-) We sometimes light candles or oil lamps in the evening instead of glaring electric lights.
Keep your freezer full. Even if that means putting jugs of water in it to take up space. In the summer take a jug out, makes good drinking water as it thaws.
I run my dryer and dishwasher at night when the weather is cooler in the summer, and during the afternoon when the weather is cooler in the winter; it keeps my a/c and furnace from running more. I also exchanged my light bulbs with fluorescent ones. You can use breakers for your tv etc. that can be shut off when you are done. Also if you shut down pc's when you are at work and sleeping it reduces electric by a lot. Clean out your dryer behind the vent and your ducts, this will allow your dryer to run economically. I put bubble wrap on my windows this winter and bought cellular blinds on Amazon for $15 each. Good luck.
In the summer I don't cook in the house. I use my attached garage as a summer kitchen. I've set it up with my micro/convection oven, toaster oven, hot plate, crock pots, electric skillet, etc. It keeps the heat out of the house and is only a few steps from the kitchen/dining area.
We have put a film on our windows that keeps the heat out in the summer, and it is supposed to help keep the heat in in the winter. I use electric strips to shut off the electricity to the computer, TV, and several other appliances. I've put l/2 gallon jugs of water in the back of our toilet so it will not use as much water, it still works good that way. Replaced as many light bulbs as I can with the cfl's, and use the new led's for night lights.
If your meter is digital, check it at the same time daily and record how many KWHs you are using. You will be able to tell what a difference you make when you make changes in what you are doing to save electricity.
Wow these are great! I saved $20 this month with the switch to NA POWER and definitely going to try the washer/dryer appliances. Maybe even some candles ha! I didn't realize the crock pot would make a difference. The only question I have on the freezer is sometimes I get freezer burn if there is too much in it.
A friend saves money and I've read of other who turn off their water heater or have their water heater on a light timer. I've started doing it this month and found that mine is on a hardwired light switch. (;
I live in Florida where, in the summer, the water is pretty warm right out of the tap because of the water tower storage and all day/night heat. With this said, I've found that I have boiling hot water showers (that's what we like round here!), baths and a dishwasher load w/ having it on for only about 30 minutes a day. The rest of the day, we have hot water from the reservoir for washing hands, small amounts for hand wash dishes, and other sundry tasks.
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