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Creative Ways to Reduce Your Power Bills

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Everybody knows the basics of saving energy.

You already know, for instance, that shorter showers are important for reducing your power and water usage.

You already know that you need to turn off the lights when you leave a room.

Even when you implement all of the basic stuff, your energy consumption (and the resulting bill) is still too high for your liking.

Here are some suggestions you might not yet have thought to try.

1. Go to the Source: Your Power Company

Most of us live in states with highly regulated energy markets. This means that we don’t get to choose who supplies our power as we get to choose how to deal with the company that supplies our power…and most of the time we simply grimace at the bills and then pay them anyway.

In some states, though, like Delaware, Illinois, and Texas, the energy market is competitive, which allows you to shop around and choose the best and most affordable provider for your budget, just like you would any other product or service.Residents in these states use comparison shopping sites.

Click here to learn about rates and schedules and options for choosing renewable energy sources instead of petroleum based power. If your state is competitive, shop around for green providers who offer you a good rate!

If you don’t live in a competitive state, don’t worry; there are still plenty of things you can try.

2. Go to the Source: Your Devices

Everybody knows that one of the best ways to save power is to not turn something on unless you’re using it and to unplug most things, at the very least, at night to avoid vampire power. But do you know how much power all of your stuff actually uses?

Use a device like the Killawatt to find out exactly how much energy everything uses so that you can come up with lower powered alternatives. For example, why would you use an energy sucking slow cooker, when you can slow cook the same food in a gas-powered oven for much less?

Do you really need your router plugged in all night? Are you using the Wi-Fi while you sleep?

Finding out exactly what is inflating your power bill is a great way to drastically reduce how much you spend on your utilities every month. One woman cut her bill down by 30% using this method and some common sense!

save-money-energy

3. Use Your Own Person Power

Why are you using a fancy mixer when your own muscles and a spoon will accomplish the same goal? Why are you driving to the store for herbs and veggies when you can grow your own using your own property and time?

These are just a couple of basic ways to use your own personal power instead of the municipal supply to get things done.

Why not take this one step further?

In Portland, Oregon, there is a shop that has customers pedal bikes to power the blenders that will make their smoothies and other beverages.

Why not create a similar setup in your own home? You might not be able to pedal enough to power the refrigerator, but you can power your own smaller appliances, you can create enough power to charge mobile devices.

If you don’t like pedaling, you can try walking. Building a treadmill power source isn’t much different than building one for a bike. If nothing else, your walking and running may be enough to power the treadmill while you exercise.

Find ways to use your own power to power your stuff!

4. Switch to a Bidet

This is the only direct instruction you’ll get here.

Toilet paper is terrible for the environment. It contributes to deforestation, is not reusable or recyclable, wastes water, etc.

A bidet will get you clean without requiring you to go through roll after roll of toilet paper every day. If you cannot afford to switch to a bidet, you might consider using cloth hankies instead of toilet paper.

The fewer times you flush your toilet, the better for your utility bills. Of course, you’ll have to weigh the cost of the extra laundry against the damage done by toilet paper.

If you simply must use toilet paper, use gray water you collect to flush the toilet instead of using fresh water from the tank.

Look, everybody knows the basics of reducing energy consumption and, by extension, their power bills. Sometimes, though, you have to go to extremes and get a little creative. Use the tips in this article to help you do that and watch those utility bills drop!

19 COMMENTS

  1. I hear what you’re saying about toilet paper: it’s money and resources down the drain. I’ve considered the reusable clothes route in the past but not put it into action. Maybe it deserves a revisit. Just not sure how the rest of the household will take the idea! It deserves serious consideration though.
    diane @smartmoneysimplelife recently posted…A Simple and Streamlined LifeMy Profile

  2. There were times when I used to fall asleep with my PC on, or I would leave it on all night, intentionally, to download stuff. Man, if I would have known then what I know now, I probably would have saved a lot of money!

  3. Agreed about the unplugging devices tips – it makes a little difference! We had a tight winter last year and managed to cut a little off the power bill by unplugging devices and hanging up clothes to dry. We also washed clothes in cold water.

  4. If I knew how to build my own power source (with the help of a treadmill or bike), I’d not only save my money on the electric bill, but I wouldn’t need to pay to go to the gym either 😀 Win-win!
    Seriously though, this idea is actually very appealing to me 🙂

  5. I love tip #3! Replacing electric power with good old muscle power is a smart way to reduce your energy consumption and still squeeze in some exercise.

    Most people already know what to do to save energy. And yet, it is probably our laziness that drives us to disregard our bad habits. Reducing energy consumption is quite challenging but it is not rocket science. We can always choose to go the extra mile with discipline. After all, who doesn’t want to have extra cash in their savings account?

  6. I’ve actually managed to reduce my electric bill by a lot lately!

    First of all, my devices: I stopped using the dryer! I just hang my clothes outside and wait for them to dry. Waiting is free! I also learned I can manage without the TV on all the time as well. I mostly only listened to music anyway, so I got acquainted with YouTube and I’ve never been happier 😀

    I also stopped using certain kitchen appliances all the time. I can very well mix a dough with my own hands, it’s good muscle-exercise and I don’t consume electricity at all! I’m using my own person power, as you said 🙂

  7. I find there are certain devices (that inflate our energy bills) are simply useless! Well, not 100’% useless, but close. Take the dryer for instance. You can very easily dry your clothes outside, or even indoors (keeping a window open, so you won’t risk getting mold). Why pay for electricity, when you can have you clothes fresh and dry for free?

  8. I have recently realized how much power it takes to leave my desktop computer plugged in. I never thought about my modem, though. I’m wondering, though, if unplugging it so often will mess it up? When I’m having problems with it, the internet company has me unplug it as a troubleshooting step. I would hate to do anything to save a few dollars that would cost me in time of having to fix it more frequently.

  9. Amazing post.
    Our energy bills are just too damn high, but lowering them doesn’t require spending money on green power gadgets or sacrificing your sanity. With a few simple tricks and minor adjustments to the way you operate your appliances, you can drive your energy costs down.
    James Banyard recently posted…Hello world!My Profile

  10. I completely agree with #4 because it makes sense. I’ve been wanting to get one for the longest time. I’ll try to get one very soon from the local home depot, they have free installation as well. Thanks for sharing!

  11. I appreciate you acknowledging the fact that even when you turn off your lights, the power bill still goes up. Now that I have read this, I plan on going to my power company and finding out where I’m wasting the most energy. This article helped me a ton in understanding how power works and I plan on figuring this out and making plans to reduce my energy bill.

  12. Great Share!

    Very Informative post and Great ideas!

    Must say, saving electricity at home is not hard, but it takes discipline. The first thing to do is to change all the old style light bulbs and use energy saving bulbs. It is true that the light they give is different, but they have the same intensity as the old ones and save the energy we need. Energy saving light bulbs come in all sizes and they fit the majority of lamps in your home so there is no excuse not to use them.

    Things you people covered through the post are interesting. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  13. Hey RAMONA !!!!

    Great article.Its been great to read such article.I really appreciate it.Our energy bills are just too damn high, but lowering them doesn’t require spending money on green power gadgets or sacrificing your sanity. With a few simple tricks and minor adjustments to the way you operate your appliances, you can drive your energy costs down.I moved into a new, larger apartment this year, during the hottest and longest summer I’ve spent in Los Angeles. The heat was unyielding, and so was the air conditioning. When my first electric bill came, it soared to heights I didn’t even expect.

    Keep posting such article.
    Have a great day !!!
    Jennifer Dickie recently posted…How to: Write a Cover LetterMy Profile

  14. Hii,

    Thanks for the wonderful directions.I want to add up one point. Clean the outside air conditioner coils. Clean coils increase efficiency and reduce power consumption as well as extends the units life. Clean the outside coils with a water hose. The inside coils should be cleaned at the beginning of the cooling season by a service technician.
    Jerry James recently posted…ahmad kananMy Profile

  15. The CNN link was interesting. And the Portland, Oregon spot where people power their blended smoothie preparation by riding bikes sounds like a smart way to take care of two needs at once, while also positively impacting the environment.

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