While winter temperatures still remain unseasonal at times, people are still spending money running their heater.
There are a number of ways to control the electric bill without breaking the bank.
“The majority of our energy dollar goes to heating and cooling our space, and then the next thing is hot water. You can really impact those quite a bit,” said Chris Haddox, a WVU Assistant Professor of Sustainable Design.
Anyone can do it in a cost-effective manner.
While things like insulation and window replacement can be difficult, timely and expensive – especially if you can’t do it yourself – a simple programmable thermostat can save you more than you imagine.
“If you get up and leave in the morning, early to go to work, and you’re not going to be home until six or seven in the evening, there’s no reason really to keep your house nice and toasty during that time period,” Haddox said.
Dropping the temperature when you’re not home or while you are sleeping can save you big. Allegheny Power said dropping an average of one degree a day, can save you up to 3% on energy consumption in heating.
Putting a timer on your hot water heater has similar effects too.
“You’re heating that water up, 24-hours, seven days a week, and you’re using it just for a little bit,” Haddox said. “That hot water is just loosing heat to the environment constantly.”
There are other simple ways to save money too.
Energy efficient light-bulbs can help you save. Closing off vents in unused rooms can help as well, and sealing off drafty windows and doorways in your building can help you go green, and save green all at the same time.
“People associate green, with it must be out of reach,” Haddox said. “It’s renewable energy, it’s solar panels… But at the end of the day it’s really common sense, and there is a lot of inexpensive materials that we’ve had before we started using the nomenclature, ‘Green’ “
There are, of course, many other ways to save money on your energy bill. Using small appliances like a toaster oven instead of your conventional oven saves money.
Opening blinds that face south on a sunny day will let warm air in. Also, try switching off the dry mode of your dishwasher and let the dishes air dry, or dry them by hand.
For 92 other great tips, head over to Allegheny Power’s web site for 100 Ways to Help Control Your Energy Bill.