With the rising fuel costs in our economy, it just seems to get harder and harder for everybody to pay their heating and electricity bills. – And as utility bills become a struggle to pay, so does the catching up of other priority bills as well. People are beginning to research and try to find ways in which they can conserve energy so that the struggle will become less of one. Some of the ways to conserve on energy include purchasing energy efficient light bulbs, controlled use of your appliances and electronics, thermostat control, home weatherization, and possible budget billing with your energy bills.
Energy efficient fluorescent light bulbs can be purchased in almost any hardware store, discount stores, and also at Wal-Mart. Energy efficient light bulbs may cost more upfront, but pays off in the long run though. G.E. also made a deal recently to Wal-Mart to sell their energy efficient light bulbs at affordable costs for consumers so that they can more available to the public as well. These compact bulbs can save almost up to 75% on your energy costs, and they last for years-sometimes even up to 7 years depending on the type and brand that you purchase. The cost upfront to purchase energy efficient light bulbs may be more, but in the long run, you will be saving a lot of money on your power bills.
During the cold winter months, set your thermostat a little higher like at 72 degrees for when you are home, and during the time that you are away, set it between 65 and 68 degrees. Also in the evenings, when you are sleeping, you can also set it a little bit cooler, since you will be under covers to keep you warm. Also when you are home, you can wear long sleeves or sweaters, so that you can keep a comfort level in your home, and also cut down on your heating costs as well.
Also in the winter season, you can weatherize your home by placing plastic on windows that have a lot of air coming through them. Putting plastic on these windows traps any cold air, and you won’t be losing heat through them. Use weather stripping seal and caulk for drafts under doors, around windows, and any other places that you may feel drafts coming through. Also make sure you change your furnace and your air conditioner filters regularly. Dirty filters can lead to inefficient heating and cooling of your home, which also would be a lot of wasted energy.
When you are using appliances, watch your energy use for them. If you can afford it, try to use energy efficient appliances that use less energy to conserve use. Once you are finished using an appliance, turn it off to conserve on fuel/electricity/gas, etc. If there are any kinds of small appliances that you can unplug when you are not using them, then unplug them. Appliances such as these would be ones like microwaves, coffee pots, can openers, and blenders. If you wash your clothes at home with your own personal washer and dryer, always clean your clothes in cold water. This saves on the heating of your water. If you are worried it won’t get your clothes as clean as warm water, there are many detergents on the market today that are made for those who wash their clothes in cold water. It saves on energy and your heating costs as well.
As for saving energy with the controlled use of your appliances, the same goes for the lights and electronics in your home. If somebody isn’t using a room in your home, turn off the lights. There’s no reason to keep a light burning if the room is not in use. If you have children at home, stress this issue to them starting out at a young age, so that they will be in the habit of it as they grow older. During the daytime, try to limit the use of your lights, and use natural sunlight from your windows. If you have any electronics that aren’t being used such as your computer, radios, and televisions, shut them off as well. Don’t leave the television running just for the sake of sound if it isn’t being watched-it’s a waste of energy. For your computer, get a power strip for it and it’s accessories, then when the computer is not in use, just simply turn off the power strip with the switch. That way, it makes it easier for turning on and off.
If you are still looking for ways to save on your heating and electric bills, some companies and corporations offer budget billing and different kinds of payment plans. Budget billing would allow your bill to be at one same price every month. The company usually estimates what would be a typical bill for your home, and then sets it at a one price. Usually at the end of the billing year though, the customer is responsible for paying anything that was left over the estimated range. In some ways, this can be a positive way to save money on your bill. At the end of the year though, if the amount is a lot larger than expected, it may not be a good idea to continue with the budget billing.
With all of these ideas and tips on conserving energy, it could help lower the costs of your heating and electricity bills. Corporations all over are raising the prices on rates, but if we keep up with cutting down costs in our own homes, hopefully , we as consumers, can find a way to surpass the high rates. So keep all of your appliance and electric use in check, and hopefully, you should keep your home comfortable and cozy, without the worry and stress of high energy bills.