9 Ways to Keep Your Electric Bill Under Control

9 Ways to Keep Your Electric Bill Under Control
  • Opening Intro -

    Your electric bill fluctuates throughout the year, but can spike as soon as hot weather moves in and your air-conditioning system is activated.


Hot summer days can take its toll on your energy budget.

The first bill after a heat wave can curl your hair faster than humidity, forcing you to scramble to come up with ways to pay it. Before the next heat wave arrives, put in place some smart measures to avoid a financial hit later on.

1. Install an electronic thermostat — You’ll save big money on your electric bill if you carefully monitor the thermostat. This doesn’t mean setting the air-conditioner at 80 degrees and sweating it out, rather monitoring its use so that it cools as needed and is idle at other times. A programmable electronic thermostat is one that you want, a device that can automatically turn down the a/c just before you arrive home and cycle on and off more efficiently.

2. Change air filters — Dirty air filters can make your air-conditioning system work harder and less efficiently. Change these filters every 90 days. If you have a wall or window unit, those filters need to be changed too.

3. Inspect your HVAC — Annual inspections of your HVAC system can pay off as technicians find and seal leaky ducts, tune the system or make repairs. Even if your system is fairly new, it might need to be retuned to work optimally all summer long.

4. Supplement your system with fans — You may not need the air-conditioner cranked up if you home has ceiling fans or other fans at the ready. Try this: set your air-conditioner two degrees higher than normal and turn on fans. You may find your home comfortable enough so that the air-conditioner is used less and fans are used more. An a/c unit uses more electricity than fans.

5. Get an energy audit — Your electricity provider may offer audits of your home. Such audits can be done remotely where an analysis of your electrical consumption is tracked. For example, if you typically wash clothes during the day, the report could show you that washing clothes (and dishes) in the evening can result in a much lower charge per kilowatt hour.

6. Seal those leaks — Just as you do in the winter, you’ll want to make sure that your home isn’t leaking air in the summer. Close and lock windows; seal window and door openings. Closing curtains or drawing blinds for windows receiving direct sunlight can help you regulate the indoor temperature better.

7. Unplug it — If something is plugged in, it is consuming electricity even if it isn’t on. Unplug chargers when not in use and if an appliance is plugged in and not used, then keep it unplugged.

8. Replace appliances with energy efficient units — As your appliances wear out, replace each one with energy efficient appliances. Energy Star-rated appliances use less electricity and you may be eligible for a tax break too.

9. Scale back on work — You’ve been looking for an excuse not to do any work and a heat wave is it! Seriously, the more active you are when it is hot outside will make you want to turn down the air-conditioner inside. Reserve your work for the early hours of the morning or later in the evening when the day’s temperatures have cooled.

Energy Choice

Some consumers can save money by switching electricity providers. If you have a choice of suppliers, compare rates and choose the utility company that offers the best savings.

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Last update on 2020-01-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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Categories: Home Tips

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".