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Is Your Electricity Bill Hurting Your Wallet?

August 26, 2013

If you dread opening your electric bill each month, there are ways you can no longer have that fear. Everyone can be more energy efficient and keep a peace of mind knowing your electricity bill is not a financial burden. Not everyone wants to always eat dinner with the lights off, or always unplug their TVs, but having a general knowledge of where most of your money goes towards your bill is very helpful. According to the Department of Energy here is the breakdown of the costs in an average electricity bill:

Heating = 31%

Air conditioning/cooling = 12%

Water heating = 12%

Lighting = 11%

Computers and electronics = 9%

Dishwashers and laundry equipment = 9%

Refrigeration = 8%

Other = 8%

Since heating and cooling are the majority costs of your electricity bill, why not take a few simple steps and reduce these costs.

Here are a few suggestions to help save a couple bucks:

  • Programmable Thermostats: These thermostats let you program your home’s internal temperature. By programming it for up to a week you can even have separate temperatures for the weekends or when you’re not at home. In the long run they will save you about 35% of your heating and cooling cost.
  • Natural Gas Heating: Switching from electric heating to natural gas can be pretty costly but if you are buying a new home then opt for natural gas heating if you are looking to be energy efficient.  Also, if would also help to only heat up one room opposed to the entire house if you can.
  • Water Heating: This can be very costly, if you can adjust your water heater to 120 degrees it will be more energy efficient. If you have an ENERGYSTAR label dishwasher, they already come with an energy booster option which can increase the temperature by 20 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Lighting: By switching your light bulbs to CFLs or LED light they might be a couple bucks more, but they last five to ten times longer and can save you about 90% on your electric bill.
  • Computers and Electronics: Use your laptop if you have one instead of your desktop since it uses less electricity. Also, unplug all electronics and power adapters when not in use (being in standby mode still consumes energy).
  • Dishwasher and Laundry equipment: Make sure to check the wattage on your appliances, and adjust settings according to energy facts labels on the back or bottom of the appliance. If you are purchasing a new appliance, look for one with an ENERGYSTAR label.
  • Refrigerators: If you can purchase a ENERGYSTAR labeled refrigerator they are more energy efficient. Also, make sure to check that the door is closed at all times since your refrigerator consumes the most energy.

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