How To Save On Utilities

3 February 2011


Today's guest post comes from the pen of MrsJanuary, who blogs about Canadian money-saving over at [Anna]

Are you sick and tired of paying too much for your utilities? There are many ways to cut back - here are 9 ways to save your family buckets of money every year:

1. Install a programmable thermostat. They enable you to set the temperature to different levels throughout the day, based on your lifestyle, which could equal big savings for you. Energy Star estimates that you can save up to $180 per year using programmable thermostats!

2. Don't leave the water running while you're brushing your teeth or washing dishes in the sink. It's wasteful. Use the water you need and if you need more, use it as you need it. There doesn't need to be a constant stream of water while you're doing those things!

3. Install CFL light bulbs. Standard incandescent light bulbs cost around $70 top operate over their lifespan, while CFL light bulbs will only cost you around $15 over their lifespan. That's a heck of a difference! If you only do ONE thing to reduce your utility costs, do this one!

4. Cook your food in batches. Try to only use your oven once a day, or less. Cook all your meals at once and then freeze the extras and you then have meals in the freezer for the times when you really just do not feel like cooking.

5. Line-dry your clothing. You can do this in your home, but it is nice to do it outdoors when it's nice weather as well. People who line-dry their clothing report an average savings of $35 off their electric bills. That's pretty substantial savings!

6. Unplug appliances that you are not using. This includes things like the television, computer, toaster, microwave, etc. Anything that you are not using at the current moment should be unplugged to save money. Even when things are turned off - if they are still plugged in, they are sucking energy and you are paying for it!

7. Only run full loads in your dishwasher and laundry washing machine. Both machines fill up with water completely, and if you don't have a lot of items inside, you are wasting that water that could be cleaning your clothing/dishes.

8. Close the vents in rooms you are not using and while you're at it, close the doors as well. This includes bathrooms! If you're not using the room, you don't need to be heating or cooling it!

9. In the summer, open your windows for fresh air. Try to avoid using your air conditioner for as long as possible and just open all of your windows to let the cool air run through your home. This really does work well, especially in the evenings when it's not very hot outside.

Most of these tips and tricks can easily be implemented within a week or two. The initial time and expense will pay for itself many times over in lower utility bills.

(Thanks Duckiemonster for the pic)


  • Becci
    Excellent tips! Except for item 8. You need to have some temp (I do 10 degrees) and circulation to avoid mildew and mold forming.
  • mememe!
    Becci, I agree with some temp and circulation. Forgot about the whole mold issue.. oopsies!
  • Allie
    I agree - in fact, it has actually been proven that closing vents and doors increases heating costs by forcing the furnace to work harder to maintain a constant temperature - and can wear out the system faster by putting too much pressure on the unit to work harder.

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