So, your most recent electric bill is through the roof or, at the very least, not to your liking.
Tons of articles online outline how to reduce your electric bill, but there’s also a lot of misleading information in those articles.
This is why we’ve sifted through that information and compiled our best advice into a single version of the truth.
Ruling Out High Costs Due To Electric Company Changes
If you think your electric bill is too high, the first thing to do is to compare that bill against what’s normal for your household. Compare your most recent bill with your old bills to see if your usage has increased. Often, the air conditioner will be the cause of high energy bills in the summer, while the heater will be the cause of high energy bills in the winter. If the bill is higher in milder weather, you may need to look at other appliances in your home.
Looking at cost alone is not a fair indicator as to how much energy you’re using every month because the cost of electricity may fluctuate.
To find out how much energy your household actually uses, start by comparing the amount of electricity in kWh. The tips below should help you determine where you could reduce electricity usage.
What To Do When Your Electric Bill Is Too High
- Change How You Wash Your Clothes
The bigger appliances in your house require a lot of energy to run, and one of the biggest energy sucks is your washing machine. For one, top-loading washers use more water and more energy than front-loading washers. While these initially cost more than top-loading washing machines, they may be worth the investment if you have a big family or frequently wash clothes. Using hot water to wash clothes tasks your water heater, so washing clothes using cold water is actually less expensive. Plus, instead of using the dryer after you wash, try air drying your items instead.
- Stop Using Old Appliances
Older appliances use more electricity than newer, energy-efficient models. Upgrading these models may have a large upfront cost, but in the long run, energy-efficient appliances tend to use about four times less electricity than older models.
- Invest In LED Lights
LED light bulbs typically use about 10 watts of electricity, while traditional incandescent light bulbs use around 60 watts. If you have a lot of light bulbs in your home, these numbers add up and result in a lot of electricity used every month. Switching out all of your light bulbs has a huge impact on reducing your electric bill. LED canned lights have the biggest impact because they seal openings to the attic that traditional canned lights don’t, preventing hot or cold air in the attic from entering your home.
- Keep Air Vents Open
There’s a myth flying around about keeping air vents closed to reduce energy consumption, but the truth is that closing these air vents actually raises energy costs. Instead of closing vents in rooms you are not using, make sure these vents are open and air is properly circulating throughout your home. This will keep your system from expending more energy than necessary.
- Increase HVAC Maintenance
Appliances between 12 and 15 years old often significantly decrease in efficiency and require more energy to keep doing their jobs. In terms of your HVAC system, cleaning and replacing coils, condensers and filters needs to be done on a regular basis to keep them working efficiently and keep your electric bill in check. In some cases, replacing the entire system is the best-case scenario. When the actual wiring goes, these loose connections can create electrical hazards that may result in fires and threats to your safety.
Striving To Create An Energy-Efficient Home
In the end, in order to truly cut your electric bill, you have to tackle the biggest user of electricity, and in Texas, that is obviously the air conditioning.
Thankfully, there’s one way to avoid electricity altogether: by harnessing the power of the sun.
Solar energy is the most energy-efficient way to heat and cool your home. There are many reasons to pursue a solar heating and cooling system. If you think solar is right for you, be sure to get in touch with your local HVAC contractor.
In the meantime, if you’re seeking more tips to cut your electric bill, simply download our tip sheet.