Lower Your Electric Bill

As the weather warms up, reduce your kilowatt usage with these 12 tips.

| June 17, 2011

  • A programmable thermostat is one way to save energy and money.
    A programmable thermostat is one way to save energy and money.
    iStockphoto.com/Paul Kazmercyk
  • An energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulb.
    An energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulb.
    iStockphoto.com/Dean Turner

  • A programmable thermostat is one way to save energy and money.
  • An energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulb.

Consumers across America often experience sticker shock with summer’s electrical bills. While kilowatt rates vary by vendor, a new national increase is being seen across the country.

With new federal regulations in place, requiring power plants to reduce sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions, many coal plants are expecting cost increases. Naturally, this expense is being passed on to consumers. Short of going “off the grid,” what’s a customer to do? Here are 12 tips to help reduce your kilowatt usage.

1. Go Window Shopping

When the weather hits over 90 degrees and it’s too hot to be outdoors, leave your credit card at home and head to an air-conditioned mall. After a few laps around the perimeter, you’ll have gotten some exercise while catching up on the latest fashions.

2. Get Out of the House

Turn off the air conditioning, the television and all those electricity hogs, and enjoy some time in the great outdoors. If your children spend their summer vacations playing video games, they’re sucking up a lot of energy without expending any of their own. Sign them up for sports leagues, summer camps and other activities outside the home. While you may have to pay a registration fee, you can still save on equipment by using Target and Sports Authority discount gift cards ordered from such sites as GiftCardGranny.com.

6/20/2011 10:52:38 AM

CFL's make as much heat as incandescent lights. CFLs also contain lots of mercury and require them to be disposed of properly which most people wont do, so they are polluting out landfills if you can believe that. If you really want to save money and stay cool switch to LED light.

Maria Barker
6/17/2011 12:03:16 PM

Now this is silly. DRIVE to the mall and contribute to massive climate and pollution issues rather than make your body adjust to life without air conditioning? Walk out of an air conditioned mall into a roasting hot parking lot and get into a car that is too hot to even look at?!? And why would I wash only pots and pans by hand when I could just as quickly and easily wash the plates and silverware in the same water? Honestly, just wash the dishes first, then the pots!

Carol Wingert
6/17/2011 9:11:01 AM

I'm always finding ways to cut electic AND my gas bill! I've been hanging my laundry outside, and in the winter I hang them in the house....puts moisture in the air! (have have forced air heat). My computer AND PRINTER are turned off when I don't use them, and I only use what lights I need to. I don' even have a TV! The ones I use for "night lights" in my hall ways are 40 watt. And I don't need 4 bulbs in my ceiling light to see properly. I love saving money so I can spend it on thing I want!

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