When was the last time you sat down to compare electricity usage, year over year? Doing so can help you take control of your energy bill — and budget.
Compare electricity usage to your previous bills
Knowledge is power. Do you know…
- …how many kilowatt hours (kWh) you use during an average month?
- …how many kWh you use during your cheapest electricity months?
- …how many kWh you use during your most expensive energy months?
If not, it’s time to investigate. You can start your energy comparison with two simple steps.
Step 1: Compare electricity bills from this year and last year
If you’ve lived in your current residence for more than 12 months, it will be straightforward to compare electricity usage. Simply find your current bill and last year’s bill from the same time period. (It doesn’t matter if you have had different electricity providers because you’re only looking for your usage data.)
You should see your monthly kWh listed on your invoice. How does your usage this month compare to that same month last year? Check other months to see if you seem to be using more, less or about the same amount of electricity that you used a year ago.
If you have switched residences in the past 12 months, it will be more difficult to compare electricity usage. This is especially true if the two places vary greatly in size and/or energy efficiency. However, it’s still a good exercise to complete to better understand how you use energy.
Step 2: Figure out the reason(s) for the year-to-year difference
The next step to compare electricity usage is to figure out why it’s higher or lower than a year ago.
If you’re using more electricity than this time last year, what could be the reason? There could be many behavior-based reasons. These include working from home more often, going on fewer or shorter vacations, using a gaming computer more often, adding energy-consuming appliances, etc.
What if you can’t think of any changes in behavior that could have caused the difference? You might start looking at your home’s structure to see if improvements should be made. For example:
- Do you need to reseal air leaks around doors and windows?
- Does your HVAC’s air filter need to be replaced?
- Are you using your thermostat in the most efficient way?
- Are any major appliances in need of replacement?
Addressing issues like these can help you reduce your electricity usage.
If you’re using less electricity than last year, that’s great! Ask yourself what behaviors may have contributed to that year-over-year decrease — and keep doing them as often as possible.
Challenge yourself to use less by this time next year
Now you have a better understanding of the factors that may have affected your electricity usage in the past 12 months. So, why not commit to making the next 12 months more energy efficient? Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Try some energy-saving tips from Texas electricity providers.
- Measure electronic device or appliance usage with a watt meter to learn more about which items in your home use the most energy.
- Utilize smart plugs to set timers and schedules for electronics that don’t always need to be turned on.
- Swap out incandescent light bulbs for more efficient LEDs (including during the holidays).
- Compare electricity rates, plans and providers to discover the best energy deals.
The simplest way to compare electricity prices
Reducing your usage is one way to lower your electricity bill. Another way is to compare electricity plans and pricing to make sure you’re getting a good deal. The simplest way to do that? Search Everything Energy to find the plan and price that’s best for your home, lifestyle and budget.