Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Loving the Fall Weather: Electric Bill Dropped $40! Yay!

Thanks to the fall weather and not yet turning on the heat with this up and down temperatures....our electric bill dropped $40 and fell below $100! That is exciting! In our last house, rarely did we go over $100 but this house is much bigger and has been a battle from time to time to keep the bill like the old house. I know it is a larger home (we love it) but I still felt like we could cut cost and get the bill back to what we had at the last home. We have actually had much better bills in the past year since making improvements from the first year to the second here.

What did we do...well I know I have shared throughout my blog but here is a few in a "nutshell":

1-New lightblocking (or more so than what the other owners had) blinds.
2-Curtains (not sheers) over windows that allow tons of light (summer time).
3-Using Electric (Ceramic, they are called I believe) plug in in the living room and an electric fireplace in the bonus (huge helps).
4-Ceiling Fans added in two rooms.
5-CFL bulbs EVERYWHERE! (only have a few specialty sizes left to go)
6-Sealed the bottoms of the bedroom doors with a plastic something at the bottom (can't remember what they are called) but helps keep the heat or air in the room and not escape.
7-Use outlet covers to keep cool drafts out (it really does help...don't you feel extra cold all the sudden even with a tiny draft?)
8-Cold water only washing.
9-No heat drying on the dishwasher.
10-Try to cut down on using the oven and use the Microwave whenever we can.
11-Lights off when we are not in the room and TV...etc...
12-Don't leave items plugged in that aren't being used or won't be used often.
13-Made sure to change filters every month winter and summer.
14-Made sure the attic was properly filled with insulation and that door sealed all the way around.
15-Close Bonus room door (room that gets the hottest in summer and coldest in winter...happens to be near the this one stays SHUT unless we are in there.)
16-We all pretty much hang out in the same room for the most lights, etc...always running in just one area of the house instead of maxing out everything at once and really getting that meter to turn.
17-Not sure how much it helps, but laundry only on one day a week and full loads only.
18-We didn't know it, but our Fridge (one from the past owners) was not great and wasn't shutting all the we eventually were forced to replace it with a new energy star one. :-)

Now I am sure there is many more things we do to cut costs...and none of these are a burden to us. Our electric bill when we first moved in was near $200 a month. (I freaked out!) Now we are talking not getting higher than $140 on the biggest month. All these little things add up as you see, and we all know over the past couple years that electric bills have went up even if you do nothing that means we have cut even more cost that I can't tell because I am not sure how much it went up. is our electric company's website...I believe they have good tips:

Save the Watts (is there "cute" name for this area of their site)

I also like this section of their site: Energy Efficiency & Renewables (talking about "greenpower, etc..")

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