Today I will be talking through how to save money on utilities.
Paying for utilities is a necessary evil, but that doesn’t mean we are powerless (pardon the pun!).
If your utility bills are high, there might be things you can do about it.
The first thing you can do is to read the mail from your utility company. I know it’s easier to toss it in the recycling bin, but many utility companies provide tips on how to reduce your usage as well as info on any available rebates or rewards programs they may be offering. Their websites can be another resource.
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Save money on utilities
If you’re looking to lower your utility bill, whether you rent or own your home, here are 20 simple tips I learned over the years that can help you save hundreds of pounds/dollars on utilities each year. You can then save and put that money to good use elsewhere.
The simplest way to save money on your bill is to go online and switch to a different provider who offers better value. There are lots of websites that can help you to do this, and it’s not as difficult as you might think. Look into how much you can save today.
Use energy efficient appliances
Appliances are rated for efficiency, between A+++ (the best) and D being the worst. Replacing old appliances with A+++ can save you money. But how much?
Well, that depends on what you are replacing.
The top 4 energy consuming appliances are fridge freezers, fridges, tumble dryers, dishwashers, then washing machines.
A house with A+++ rated appliances would save around £275 per year over a house with C or D rated appliances.
Therefore, over the lifetime of the products the savings add up.
But be careful, I am not suggesting running out and replacing all your appliances, as the payback on the savings can vary between 5-10 years. My advice is, when choosing your new appliances, go for the best rating you can afford, and sometimes it’s worth paying that little extra, as it will pay you back in the long run.
- Read the leaflets that come with these new appliances for energy-saving tips, such as washing at 20 degree C, setting the fridge and freezer temps for efficiency, washing and drying at night if you have a cheaper electricity rate between midnight and 5 am.
Switch off unnecessary lights
Now that you have energy-efficient light bulbs it is still important to switch those off when not in use.
As a parent, you have three ways to handle this challenge.
- Ask your child if they switched off the lights
- Do a check every 1-2 hours to see what needs to switch off
- Install motion sensor lights in the kid’s bedrooms
Getting them to adopt better habits might be the best solution but you can decide what works best.
Install dimmer switches
Light dimmers save energy by reducing the flow of electricity to the bulb and allowing lights to operate with lower power outputs. Since lights under less stress shine longer, dimmers are known to extend the life span of your bulbs, too.
But, if you’re planning to keep the lights down low 24/7, simple math suggests that you should opt for low wattage lights instead. Low wattage light bulbs use less energy at full power than dimmed high wattage lights.
Switch off appliances when you’re not using them
This is the simplest tip when it comes to saving money on your utility bills. Do you know some electronics still draw electricity even though they’re turned off?
This involves things like computers, lamps, coffee makers, etc. The best thing to do here is to unplug electronics when it is not being used.
Something that can be convenient and inexpensive is to use a smart power strip. Besides, protecting electronics from occasionally power outages or voltages spikes, a smart power strip could help you to quickly cut power and conserve energy when your electronics aren’t in use.
Set your water heater temperature lower
Not only does it prevent scalding burns to yourself and your little ones, but it saves money too, since the water heater doesn’t have to work as hard to heat up the water.
Keep it as hot as you need it to thoroughly clean your dishes and sterilise your laundry. Each home is different, so keep adjusting the temperature until you find what’s right for you.
Wash at lower temperatures
Did you know that washing at 30 degrees can be a third cheaper than at 40 degrees? Moneysupermarket believes it could lower your electricity bill by around £52 a year.
Use cold water to wash clothes
Very simply, washing clothes on cold saves energy, saves your clothes and saves money.
Here’s an interesting article from ColdWaterSaves.org that breaks it down for you and also dispels the misinformation floating around out there that says using warm/hot water is the only way to get your clothes clean.
That’s simply not true.
Air drying laundry
Tumble dryers are one of the most expensive appliances to run in your household.
But what about for those cold and rainy days in the winter?
You can still air dry your clothes inside, near the radiator. An added benefit of drying clothes inside in the winter, it increases the humidity indoors which can avoid dry nasal passages that are more receptive to viruses.
In addition, air drying clothes will help your clothes last longer as it’s gentler to the fabric. For even bigger causes, it reduces the carbon footprint thus, saving our environment.
Run full loads of laundry
Full loads will consume less energy than washing two half loads. In case you just need to get small batches of clothes wash, wash them by hand. By doing this, you will save money on your electric and water bill.
Give maintenance to your dryer.
Your dryer machine will work more efficiently by giving it the proper maintenance. This includes keeping the lint trap clean after each time you dry your clothes.
Also, don’t forget about the dryer’s vent, clean it at least every four to six months. You will use less energy, and your utility monthly bill will be reduced.
Use appliances off-peak
If you’re using large appliances that suck up a lot of energy, aim to use them during off-peak hours. Off-peak fees are much cheaper than peak times, and the savings will add up. Each supplier will have different hours, so make sure you check your suppliers’ peak schedule. Generally, off-peak hours are in the evening. Do your loads of laundry, or run dishwashers during those off-peak hours and avoid using them in the day time.
Program your thermostat
There’s no reason to be heating your home when no one is there. If there are certain times of the day when no one is in your house, turn your heating down.
You can program your thermostat to kick back on an hour before you get home so you can still come home to a warm house. Secondly, turn it down while you’re sleeping.
When you’re asleep, you’ll be warm under the covers and don’t need the same level of heat. Even lowering it by a few degrees will reduce your energy bill substantially.
Check your vents
Many people don’t know that some of their vents might be clogged or closed. However, clogged or closed vents can put a toll on your AC system. AC systems work optimally when all vents are cleaned and opened.
Closed vents demand a lot more energy from your HVAC system and checking your vents on takes a few minutes. You should also check if the filters are clean as well.
Weatherise your home
This is one of my favourite energy saving tips at home!
Air escapes your home through cracks and small holes throughout your home, such as door frames, windows, and the like.
Weather-stripping places where air can escape will keep your home warmer in the winter and colder in the summer, thus keeping your energy costs lower.
Make your blinds work for you
In the summer months, keep the blinds or curtains closed – especially on the windows where there is direct sun exposure. However, in the winter months, open them to allow the heat to flow into your house.
Install water efficient toilets and shower heads
Another great way to save money on your water bill is to install a low-flow toilet.
These toilet bowls reduce the amount of water you flush down and this can really help reduce your water bill over time.
There are also toilets that have different types of flushing options so that the amount of water used will be much less if you’re just doing a number one compared to a number two.
Installing a water-efficient shower head is also an option to save money when you take a shower.
Combining this type of shower head with taking shorter showers can do wonders to save money on utilities over time!
Avoid the dishwasher
Although I talked about only using high electricity appliances during off-peak hours, if you really want to be frugal, you can avoid using the dishwasher altogether if you don’t have a high-efficiency dishwasher.
Dishwashers use a lot of heat and water so depending on how many dishes you have; it might be best to stick to washing your dishes by hand especially if you’re only home during on-peak hours.
If you really must use a dishwasher, make sure you use it as efficiently as possible by only turning it on when it’s fully loaded and using the ‘eco-setting’ if it has that feature.
Take shorter showers
One of my favourite things in the world, especially during the winters here in UK, is a long, hot shower. But with lengthy, hot showers comes a price.
If you’re like me, you may find that you spend a ton of money on water and water heating. This can easily be avoided.
If you want to save money on your water bill, shorten your showers.
Keeping your showers to a maximum of around 10 minutes is a good middle ground. You can still enjoy your shower but save money on utilities and water resources at the same time.
And if you’re even more adventurous, start taking short, cold showers (apparently this is a thing and has many benefits to it!)
Check for leaks
Hidden water leaks can result in abnormally high-water bills, and none of us want to pay for something we’re not even using!
If you’re not sure why your bill is so high, do a leak test by checking your water meter right before bedtime and then as soon as you wake up.
If the numbers have changed, you may have a leak somewhere. Try these six tips for finding it yourself, or else call a plumber.
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Save money on utilities – Final thought
Saving money on your utility bills is possible by just being conscious of the usage and identifying any potential waste of water, energy and other things around your home.
Probably, at first some adjustments will require adding a small investment, but this will pay for itself by lowering your utility bills.
Not only that but shrinking your phone bill and eliminating cable or satellite will also help with the overall reduction of your utility bills and monthly expenses at home
What are your tips for saving money on utilities? I would love to hear them below.
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Hello! My name is Adam and welcome to my space on the internet. Here you can find me writing about topics such as lifestyle, self-care, self-development, finance, saving money and making money. Come and join the community!