How to Cut Your Utility Bills in Half
THE WOODLANDS, TX -- 2020 brought quite the financial strain on our economy. One thing to consider in order to save your money is learning how to cut your utility bills in half. We have good news for you: it’s definitely possible. Now more than ever, it’s so important to save every penny. Here are some tips to help you reduce your electric and gas costs in your home.
According to Energy.gov, “Air conditioning systems use about 6% of all the electricity produce in the United States”. Follow these steps to cut back some of those energy costs.
- Change your filters. Many homeowners believe that your filters only have to be changed once or twice a year. Your filters should be changed once a month for optimum performance – especially if there are pets and/or allergies in your home!
- Use a programmable thermostat. Set it and forget it. Your thermostat can be set to a more energy efficient temperature if you are not home for long periods of time. This will ensure that your system is not constantly on and running up your utility bills.
- Have biannual HVAC maintenance performed. If your air conditioning system is running at optimum peak performance, it will not have to work as hard to cool or heat your home. This will be reflected in your utility bills. Hire a professional to come out twice a year and inspect your system. This will also help alert you to potentially life-threatening issues, like carbon monoxide leaks.
- Upgrade old, inefficient HVAC systems and/or ductwork. The older an air conditioning system gets, the harder it will have to work to cool or heat your home. This is especially true if you haven’t kept up with biannual maintenance. After awhile, you also run into the problem of leaky ductwork – which is letting your expensive hot/cold air flow right into your attic.
Whether your water heater(s) run off of electricity or gas, there is still room to improve your utility savings.
- Adjust the temperature of your water heater. Usually, your water heater will have a little knob on it that controls the temperature of your water. Your water heater will not have to work as hard if this is set to a lower setting.
- Consider going tankless. Tankless water heaters are known to require a fraction of the electric/gas costs compared to tank type water heaters. According to Energy.gov, “(tankless) water heaters can be 24%-34% more energy efficient than conventional storage tank water heaters”. While the cost is higher initially for the install, you benefit greatly from the utility savings. The added comfort of never running out of hot water is just a bonus!
Beyond unplugging appliances not in use and turning your unused lights off, there are a couple of other ways you can save on your electric bill.
- Install motion sensor light switches. Are there certain rooms where you just can’t seem to remember to shut the light off? Like…the pantry, or a closet? Automate this by having motion sensor light switches installed in these rooms. You never again have to worry about forgetting and accidentally running up your light bill.
- Use your ceiling fans. If you’re not already using your ceiling fans – you should be! Ceiling fans can help you keep cool or warm air circulating in your home. This will help with the expensive load your air conditioning system is carrying.
- Use LED lightbulbs. Go LED! LED bulbs are more expensive initially, but last much longer and do not cost nearly as much as conventional light bulbs. These are worth the investment.
Lastly, check the height of your attic insulation. You should have at least 6″ of attic insulation. This will help your home maintain it’s temperature, rather than heating or cooling off the neighborhood. Attic inefficiency can leak dollars right out of your wallet.
If the above tips are new to you, and you’re not sure where to begin, Bradbury Brothers is happy to help. We currently service The Woodlands and surrounding areas, up to Willis, out to Porter and down to right above Beltway 8. Our Bradbury Rewards Club members benefit each year and receive an inspection in all areas mentioned above – cooling, heating, plumbing, electrical and attic efficiency. Call 281-661-4283 or contact us here if you would like us to help you find ways to save on your utility bills every year.