10 Tips to Cut Down Your Electricity Bill

Are your electricity bills skyrocketing and driving you crazy? Here are the 10 ways to cut down on this expense and keep your cool.

The cost is higher than ever and is not going down any time soon. So the only alternative is to cut costs. Here are a few guidelines on how to do it:

1. Conduct Energy Audit
 Doing energy audits assesses how much energy you use and where. This  will help you draft energy saving plan, pinpointing exactly the areas  where you can cut energy consumption.

2. Invest in Fluorescent Lights
 Switch over from old Thomas Edison bulbs to fluorescent lights. Though  there are some initial costs involved, they are far more energy  efficient as they use 75 percent less energy as compared to ordinary  light bulbs.

3. Switch Off or Unplug Electric Devices
 Everything that is plugged is using electricity. All the devices on  standby mode account for about 6 percent of the energy usage in your  home. Turn them off if you are not using them.

 4. Purchase Energy-Efficient Appliances
 If your electric appliances date back to the 80s, it’s time to upgrade.  Replace your outdated devices with models that have Energy Star label.  Energy Star is a joint project initiated by the Environmental Protection  Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy. 

 These appliances will lower down your electricity bills significantly as they are energy efficient.

 5. Program Your Thermostat
 Turn off your thermostat to give your air conditioner a break for at least the eight hours that you are at work.
 While at home, lower the thermostat just four degrees. Most of your  family members will not even notice difference in home temperature.

 6. Regulate Your Water Heater
 Turning down the water heater by 10 degrees can lower electricity bills and save energy by 3 to 5 percent.
 Use programmable water heaters. Set the timer to turn off the heater  one hour before going to bed and turn on one hour before walking in the  morning.

 7. Add Insulation
 Many homes have leaky areas. Insulate with weather stripping and  caulking to plug all the drafts. Increase insulation in the attic and  basement.
 As most of the power used to heat or cool the room is lost through  doors and windows, use heavy drapes and fasten them with all-purpose  weather plastic.

 8. Use Washing Machine and Dish Washer Wisely
 Avoid using washing machine unless you have a full load. Do not waste  energy in drying clothes when sunlight is available for free.
 Quit using dishwasher unless you had a party and there are lots of  dishes to do. Wash your dishes right after eating rather than leaving  them overnight.

 9. Save on Cooking
 When the food you are cooking has a microwave as well as heat-in-oven  option, prefer using the former, as there is no need to preheat the  microwave and it is on for shorter duration as compared to oven.

 10. Plant Trees
 Finally, the simplest energy-saving technique is planting trees. The air  conditioning bills can be reduced up to 25 percent if the house  utilizes tree shading. They not only maintain the coolness in summers,  but insulate your house in winters too.

 Conserving energy will not make you rich for sure, but it can help you out in case of future price hike in electricity.