Ahh summer. Sunshine streaming in the windows, air warm enough to wear shorts and a t-shirt in… and higher utility bills from trying to keep everything cool and watered.
We look forward to the season after a long, cold winter indoors, but we often forget about the price tag that comes with it. Trying to stay comfortable in your own home can come at a cost. And on top of all the other expenses, utility bills can feel overwhelming.
We’ve put together some handy tips to help you beat the heat and keep those utility bills from soaring.
It’s easy for us to set it and forget it when it comes to our thermostat. We don’t really think twice about adjusting the temperature in our houses. We want to be comfortable: cooler in the summer, warmer in the winter.
But did you know that even a couple of degrees difference can make or break your utility bill?
Make minor changes gradually on your thermostat so the change isn’t so noticeable. If the nights are cool and you're heating your room, try turning it down by just one degree a night. Turn it down (or off) when you’re not at home in the summer. There’s no reason to be spending money when you’re not there.
You might be surprised at how much extra water is used during the summer months around your home. Between watering plants/gardens/lawns, having showers to cool down, doing more laundry, and having guests over, your water bill can significantly rise.
The warmer months bring more sunshine and light with them. Make this work for you by turning the lights in your home down or off. Outdoor lights don’t need to be on while it’s light out. Only turn the lights on in the rooms that you’re using.
When it’s time to replace the lightbulbs in your home, go for energy-efficient ones. They’ll last significantly longer and use less energy. Chances are you can go for a lower wattage bulb than the one you’re replacing, which also saves energy. But be wary of light bulbs labeled ‘long life’ since these bulbs can use more energy than your typical bulb.
Using your windows wisely can help make a significant difference in your utility bill.
Closing your drapes during the day is an excellent way to block the sunshine in the summer and stop the heat from coming in. Blackout curtains block even more of the sunlight keeping your room even cooler. Consider picking up highly reflective window film from the hardware store. It’s easy to install and blocks and reflects the sunlight.
It might surprise you to know that some electronic devices and appliances such as lamps, TVs, coffee makers, and toasters use energy even if they’re turned off.
This type of electricity is called “standby” electricity and can really have an impact on your energy bill. When you leave the house for the day or go to bed at night, unplug devices that you’re not using to save money.
Unplug your power cords and chargers too. We tend to have these scattered throughout the house for different devices, plugged into the wall waiting to charge something. Simply unplug these cords when not in use and start saving.
Try these tips and tricks in your home and see what a difference they can make on your utility bills!
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