Money Saving Tips: How to Save on Your Electric and Gas
With the holiday season comes colder weather, more frequent visitors, and holiday decorations – which, in turn, bring increased electric and gas bills. The good news is there are ways to help control these costs.
Here are 11 money saving tips and how to save on your electric and gas:
- Invest in LED lights both in the house and for holiday decorations. While the initial investment of LED lights is higher than traditional bulbs, the savings gained puts you ahead financially over time. LEDs also have a longer lifespan which means more time before buying new bulbs.
- Adjust your thermostat. This tried-and-true method really does save money. If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, consider investing in one or simply be diligent to adjust the temperature based on time of day and whether or not anyone is home.
- Fully turn off electronics. Out of convenience, electronics are often left plugged in and even turned on or in “standby” mode. Unfortunately, this constantly spends energy. To avoid this, fully turn off electronics and disconnect cords (even phone chargers) when not in use. Save even more money, by using a power strip that can be turned on and off as needed. To keep the power strip more convenient to use, get one with a long cord that allows it to sit up off the floor (such as just behind the tv).
- Run full loads. When doing laundry or dishes, always run full loads. Sometimes it’s easier to wash half a load but that wastes energy – double waste when you also need to dry clothes.
- Turn off lights and fans. It might be only pennies at a time, but it adds up. Cultivate the habit of turning off lights and fans when you leave a room for more than a few minutes. This can also go a long way to making your bulbs, fixtures, and fans last longer.
- Keep the heat in and moving. Filling in cracks underneath doors, seals that are missing on windows, or any other space you find air drafts coming through saves money on heat. Other cost-saving measures include: Keeping furniture and drapes clear of heat registers so they aren’t just absorbing the heat. Using ceiling fans set on the lowest setting and rotating clockwise (so the air flows up, not down) to keep warm air moving.
- Turn the water off. When you wash your hands, shave, and even wash dishes, don’t leave the water running. Not only will you save water, but you’ll also save on heating more water.
- Upgrade appliances. Like LED bulbs, buying energy efficient appliances can be costly upfront, but the overall savings is worth the investment.
- Use smaller appliances. Larger appliances, such as the oven, use a lot more energy. Use a toaster oven, microwave, or standard toaster whenever you can. Other swaps to consider: A manual can opener instead of an electric one. A small stick (immersion) blender instead of a full-sized regular blender. A small hand mixer instead of a stand mixer. A single countertop convection burner instead of a traditional stovetop.
- Cut your freezer space. Making sure your freezer is full cuts down on electricity costs. Frozen on frozen helps keep the freezer down to temperature. Likewise, if you aren’t using that extra refrigerator or freezer in the garage, consider unplugging it to save money.
- Do chores during “off-peak” hours. In some areas, electricity and/or gas can cost more during peak hours. Check your utility bills to see if this is the case for you. If so, do your chores during off-peak times to minimize the times you’re paying peak hour prices.
Looking for more ways to save? Check these out!