With summer officially here, many people are worried about their rising electric bills when they increase their air conditioning usage. Here are 10 practical tips for cheaper electricity bills this summer.
Tip #1: Master your thermostat settings
If you’re going for a cheaper energy bill, start with your thermostat. If you have a programmable or smart thermostat, set it according to you and your family’s schedule. When you’re home, run it at a comfortable temperature. When you’re sleeping, kick the setting up a few degrees. And when you’re not home, bump it up even further, or turn it off completely. (But keep in mind any pets that may need you to maintain a comfortable temperature while you’re away.)
Increasing the temperature setting in summer, even by a degree or two, can make an impact on your monthly bill.
Tip #2: Seal air leaks
It doesn’t make sense to run your A/C all day if it’s just seeping out of your home left and right. If you own your home, seal up those leaks with caulk or weatherstripping to keep the cool air in and the hot air out. If you rent, ask your landlord to take care of the issue.
This is another way to achieve cheaper electricity bills in summer.
Tip #3: Maintain your A/C
Regular HVAC maintenance will go a long way in keeping your air conditioner (and heater) running at optimal efficiency. A yearly professional tune-up and regular filter replacement can help in your quest for cheaper electricity bills in summer.
Tip #4: Cover windows
Did you know that about 76% of sunlight shining through standard double-pane windows enters as heat? This makes your air conditioner work harder to keep you comfortable. Minimize this solar heat gain by shutting curtains and blinds when you don’t need natural sunlight. Insulated window coverings offer even more protection against solar heat gain.
Tip #5: Ventilate
Want to keep your A/C usage down? Use Mother Nature’s free gifts! Open windows in the early morning, late evening and overnight to enjoy cooler air and refreshing breezes.
Tip #6: Plan appliance use
Avoid introducing more heat into your home from cooking, washing dishes and doing laundry during the hottest part of the day. Instead, make dinner in a slow cooker or grill outdoors, and run your dishwasher and clothes dryer at night. To maximize your energy efficiency, go one step further:
- Have cold dinners (like sandwiches, salad and fruit)
- Skip the heated dry cycle on your dishwasher
- Hang your clothes to dry instead of using the dryer
Tip #7: Use LEDs
Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) pack a one-two punch that will help you achieve cheaper energy bills. First, LEDs are at least 75% more energy efficient than regular incandescent bulbs. Second, LEDs emit very little heat, compared to incandescent bulbs, which release 90% of their energy as heat. So, LEDs use less energy and add less heat to your home.
Tip #8: Unplug
Unused electronics that remain plugged in and on standby mode still consume energy. This phantom load can unnecessarily add to your electricity bill. So, banish this vampire power by getting in the habit of unplugging electronics when you’re done using them.
Tip #9: Cool off other ways
Running your air conditioner all day may be the most convenient way to stay cool. But it’s probably also the most expensive. To decrease your monthly electricity usage, try other methods of staying comfortable in the heat. Putting ice on your pulse points, wearing breathable clothing and sitting near a fan can all help beat the heat without breaking the bank.
Tip #10: Shop around for a cheaper electricity rate
Using less power using the methods above is one way to get a cheaper electricity bill. You can also shop for an electricity plan that best fits your needs, usage habits and preferences. Think of it like the story of Goldilocks — you want to find a plan that’s just right.
Finding the plan that’s just right for you
Everything Energy specializes in helping Texas residents find that just right electricity plan and cheapest electricity rates for their unique situation. Using our search filters, it’s easy to narrow down your choices, make apples-to-apples comparisons and see estimated bill totals. Find your plan today!