Save Big Money on Electric Bills

‘Green’ is the buzzword of 2008. Living green means using less electricity. Electricity, which has never been a terribly expensive utility, is now escalating in price with all the other utilities. Our electric bills have doubled in the past 5 years despite the fact that we have installed every energy saving device possible. Here are 25 easy ways to counteract the rising costs of energy by reducing usage.

Buy a carpet sweeper and clean the carpets manually instead of using your vacuum. I bought a $15 carpet sweeper which I simply push over the carpets and empty in the trash. I haven’t used my electric vacuum for two weeks and my carpets are just as clean. The carpet sweeper is better for people with allergies and sinus problems as well.

– Clean Upholstery with a hand held vacuum cleaner or lint brush. Even the electric hand held vacuum uses less energy than your big vacuum.

– Soak dirty dishes in hot, sopay water and wash by hand. The dishwasher is one of the largest users of energy. the dishes must be rinsed before loading the dish washer anyway.

– Wash clothing on warm or cool, using hot water only for whites. Rinse clothing in cold water. Hot water heaters are the largest drain on your electricity.

– Cook in an electric frying pan, crock pot or slow cooker, rather than heating up your big oven.

– Monitor your electric meter yourself. The more electricity you use the faster the dial will spin.

– Keep refrigerators and freezers full; don’t run them if you only keep them less than half full.

– Switch to T-8 or T-5 florescent light bulbs; for those of you like me who hate the glare of florescent lights, there are colored light bulb options to reduce the intensity of florescent lights.

– Close curtains in summer to keep the heat and sun out.

– Open curtains in winter to let light and heat in.

– Use fans to cool your home. Air conditioning is a huge electrical expense. Put a fan in each window facing inward when there is cool air coming in, and outward as an exhaust fan if the air is heavy, humid or very hot.

– If you use air conditioners, don’t set them any lower than 70 degrees. It’s better for health not to run ACs so high also. We don’t want any brown outs this summer; then no one will have any power.

– If you use fans, set them on low at night.

– Turn fans off when you leave the house.

– Keep fan blades and coverings clean; the fan will run harder and produce less air if it is dirty.

– Keep clothing dryer vents clean. Remember to clean out the lint that accumulates in the hose connecting the dryer to the outdoor vent. My appliance repairman says that he has often found a half a cat’s worth of hair clogging the dryer duct work in people’s dryers.

– Hang clothes to dry outside on a clothes line.

– Turn on lamps in the areas that you need them, avoid using big overhead or vanity lights with multiple bulbs, that run 180-300 watts of lighting.

– Do not cook in your microwave. Besides being a big electricity user, microwaves are not healthy to cook in.

– Install motion sensor outdoor lighting. These lights shut off after a few moments and come on only when someone comes near.

– Check for unknown areas of electric usage that you can reduce (lights left on; computers left running, etc.)

– Read your electric company’s literature for more helpful tips.

You will be healthier, happier, greener both in your lifestyle and in your wallet if you follow these tips.

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