With Summer right around the corner, there are a lot of ways to save some money in the hot temps! My bill is usually only around $200 since I live in Seattle, and “summer” only happens for about 2 months a year. I can certainly keep the bill a bit lower just by checking on a few key things…
Check out your windows and doors for drafts or air leaking in or out. It may be tough to see if there is a draft, but one cheap tip to test is to put a candle by the suspected door or window. If you’re seeing it flicker you’ve likely got some leakage that needs to be looked at or caulked up!
It keeps warm air in during the winter months, but don’t forget that it also keeps cold air in during the summer months. If you’ve got a new house, it’s likely that it hasn’t sagged down or gotten old yet, but it doesn’t hurt to check it out. Make sure you’ve got it throughout the attic in a level pattern.
You may even be under warranty with your housing company and they’ll fix it if it isn’t properly set up. It may be worth your $ to check it out.
Your thermostat MAY actually be off. Check to make sure it’s actually heating or cooling as needed throughout the year. If you’ve got a regular mercury thermometer, test it against your thermostat. If your thermostat is off, you’re blowing cold air when it shouldn’t be and that’s just like having a hole in your pocket book. Make sure it works and is reading properly!
According to LiveEarth.org, just lowering your thermostat two degrees will save 4% on your energy bill and prevent 500 pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere, keeping you living green as well!
Also keep appliances away from your thermostat thermometer, this will also trick your thermostat to thinking it is warmer than it really is in the house.
Yes, in theory, it is always nice to keep a draft flowing through the house so you’d think that it is a good idea to keep the windows open during the heat to cool it down, but you’d be fooling yourself. The secret here is to open them when the outside temperature is lower than the inside temperature. So open them up around 10pm when it starts to cool down to a temperature you’re want IN the house.
Keep them open until morning when the sun starts getting warm, usually around 8 or 9am at the latest. Close them up and shut the blinds to keep that nice cool air you’ve let in during the night to keep you cooler during the day!
Your furnace has to keep going even if you’re not using it for warmth during the summer. Your pilot light typically costs $3-$5 per month to keep lit. If your heating system has one, save yourself some green and put it out during the summer. Just remember to turn it back on when you need it in winter!
Yes, it is very tempting, especially when you’re seeing 100+ degree temperatures in your area, but you’ve got to resist when you consider what you’re going to be spending to cool yourself down for a short stint.
Beware though that opening the refrigerator/freezer door accounts for $10 – $20 of a typical family’s electrical bill each year based on 40-60 openings per day.
Think if you leave it open to get cool; it takes time to cool back down once it IS open for a bit.
Computers generate a lot of heat, and a lot of $ for the electric company. Keeping it on during the summer (or ever for that matter) is sending your power bill in the wrong direction. Leaving that thing running when you’re not using it is also bumping up the heat in your house; every little bit helps!
You can save yourself a lot of money and cool air if you follow these simple steps here, but keep the MoneyLifeNetwork in your back pocket the entire rest of the summer as we’re cooking up a post-per-day regimen through the month LOADED with tips like this to save you money and improve your lives this summer! Keep an eye out, subscribe to the MoneyLifeNetwork RSS feed, join the party and win money to boot!