Friday, March 30, 2012

Being Frugal with Electricity

Frugal Friday

As the cost of electricity and other utilities continues to rise, we are looking for ways to save on our usage, as well as cost. There are some things you can control, and others you can't. For example, if your city or town has only one supplier for electricity, you are stuck with their rates. But some towns are now allowing competitors to supply the energy.

So how can you save? First, let's look at the above example. If your state or town is deregulated, you can shop around for suppliers and compare rates, rather than rely on only one company. (Do a search on the internet for "deregulated electricity" in your state to find providers near you.) You won't have to change any of your equipment, and you will still be billed through your current provider.

If you can't change your supplier, then look at ways to save at home. Have an electrician install a power-saving device on your meter. This will conserve energy, help appliances run more efficiently, and help protect from power surges.

Another way to save energy is to have your air conditioning and lights controlled remotely by your computer or smart phone. If you have a security system installed, some companies, like Devcon, have apps that allow you to turn your air up/down, or your lights on/off when you are away from home.

If you are shopping for new appliances or electronics, look for those with a good energy rating. And those you already have? Unplug them when not in use. They still draw energy even when they are turned off.

Purchase CFL bulbs for your light fixtures. And finally, turn those lights off when you leave a room.

What are some ways you've saved on your electric bill?

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