Winter can be an amazing season, full of building snow sculptures, going skiing and ice skating, and drinking hot cocoa while curled up by the fireplace.
No matter what your preferred winter activities, one thing is for certain – winter can be expensive! One way homeowners and renters in particular can be affected is by the increased cost of hydroelectricity that can come along with winter.
There are many reasons why winter is so harsh on your hydro bill. Running heat alone can skyrocket your monthly costs. Additionally, you may not be as active during these months, meaning you might be more likely to be sitting at home watching television or using other electronics that use up power. And don’t forget the short winter days – the earlier the sun sets, the earlier you will need to turn on lights.
To help you bring down these high winter costs, we’ve found six amazing ways to reduce your electricity bill. To make it even better, we’ve tried to order our suggestions starting with the easiest.
Heat on a Schedule
If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, you’re missing out. This can be a huge energy saver!
Why heat your house when you’re not there? If you can, it’s much better to reduce your heat to 18 degrees when you are not home or when you are asleep. Otherwise, try turning your heat down throughout the day. Every degree lower can save a percentage of your heating costs.
Laundry isn’t something we can avoid, but there are ways to make it more cost-effective. It’s expensive to heat your water. Regardless of how new or efficient your water heater is, it takes lots of time and energy to get it hot enough to use. Using cold water for your laundry can drastically reduce your energy usage.
Also, make sure you are getting your bang for your buck. Wait until you have a full load and run the load during off-peak hours.
If possible, consider buying an energy-efficient washer. Energy Star models ensure that your laundry is being done with the least amount of energy possible while still providing a quality clean. Combined with the previous tips, you know you’ll save bundle!
Switch Our Your Bulbs
Some sources say that switching to LED lightbulbs or Compact Fluorescent Bulbs (CFLs) can drastically cut your bill by up to 75%. This is partially due to their ability to stay cool while in use. Plus their long life is a nice bonus, too! These bulbs just don’t disappoint.
Dry It Yourself
When using the dishwasher or doing your laundry, it is far more convenient to let the machines do your drying for you. However, that is costing you money in electricity.
For your dishes, turn off the heat-dry whenever you have time to wait. By de-selecting this option and either manually drying dishes or propping the door open to let them air dry, you’re saving yourself money every day!
When it comes to laundry, it’s simple to skip right over using the dryer. Instead, get a drying rack and hang your clothes up. Then of course when summer comes around again, you can put out the clothesline and let the sun do your work.
Unplug Those Electronics
Power experts refer to ‘phantom power’ – the power appliances and electronics drain while plugged in and not in use. It’s of course more convenient to keep your televisions and computers plugged in all day, but getting any of these electronics unplugged can have a positive impact on your energy usage that will be reflected in your hydro bill.
If you’re still concerned about convenience, why not keep your electronics plugged into a power bar? That way you can turn the entire power bar off when the electronics are not in use.
Upgrade Your Appliances
As mentioned above, appliances like washers and fridges may be necessities, but they can also be a big energy suck. Try to replace any old appliances with Energy Star models. That symbol guarantees that those appliances will save at least 15% on energy as compared to the federal standard.
We hope these tips were helpful. Happy Holidays!