Saving some energy $$


I received my Ameren UE personal energy report yesterday and was floored at how much electricity my household uses.  For 2010 my cost was $831.67 which averages out to $2.28 a day.

The highest month was August (the temperature was hovering about 84 degrees at that time) and the lowest was December with temps at about 37 degrees.

Though we pay some of the lowest rates here I am still appalled at spending so much money on simple niceties.

Ameren included a cost reduction flyer which I plan on putting into good use. Here are some tips:

Lighting

Turn off lights not in use. A single 100-watt bulb uses 72 cents of power monthly.  If you buy an ENERGY STAR qualified compact flourescent (CFL) bulb it uses roughly 75% less energy and you can save $30.00 in costs annually during the bulb’s lifetime.

Water Heating

Turn down your water heater to 120 degrees. Hot water accounts for over 25% of the average energy bill. Also cutting down your shower time can save $5 a month. (I don’t take long showers as it is…must have been a leftover from the military.)

Insulating

Using chalk and weather-stripping around windows an doors can cut down on those air leaks. I have energy-efficient windows upstairs and you can feel a marked difference in both heating and cooling. Time to replace those downstairs’ windows!

Kitchen

Use ENERGY STAR qualified refrigerators and get rid of old ones that are simply sucking up the juice. Keeping an older model can cost you over $100 a year. (Think where you could better invest that money!)

Check the manufacture’s instructions for proper settings. Do not set it colder than necessary.

Vacuum the dust off the condenser and keep your fridge away from heat. (Gross I know but it can prolong the life of your appliance and save you $$$ each month.

And do what I do…when I am at work (and daughter is in school) I don’t keep anything on unless it’s the microwave clock and my alarm clocks…that’s it.

I believe the bulk of my electric $$ comes from needing to replace the windows. Once that project is completed I know I will see a marked savings in my wallet and be environmentally friendly.

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