Last Updated April 10, 2020
Is your electric bill ridiculously high? If so, you’re probably asking “how can I save money on my electric bill?” Trust me, it’s a lot easier than you think. Find out 10 easy ways you can reduce your utility bill and save money.
Do You Have A Budget?
Before we get started, you need to have a budget first. Having a budget allows you to see how much your utilities are and track if you’re making progress with cutting your expenses. If you’re just starting out, you can download this FREE Monthly Budget Worksheet.
However, if you need something a little more sophisticated, you can get my Budget Template. This is the template I actually used to save over 50% of my income and it is the same template I use to this date.
You can read more about how I use my excel budget templates in my detailed article “How I Use My Monthly and Yearly Household Budget Spreadsheet.”
Once you have your budget set up, we can now focus on how to save money on your electric bill.
How To Save Money On Electric Bill?
1. Live With Roommates
A benefit to shared housing is you can reduce your housing expenses and also share the cost of utilities. By living in a shared space, you are able to reduce your electric bill by at least 50% (assuming your roommates are energy conscious like you).
2. Get A Smart Thermostat
The thing that uses the most electricity in your house is your heating and cooling system. You can easily save money on your electric bill by investing in a smart thermostat. With a smart thermostat, you can simply program the temperature according to time of day.
A smart thermostat connects to your home’s Wi-Fi network, and homeowners can then access the thermostat through a mobile app or online.
I recommend investing in a smart thermostat because it can be accessed remotely. This is especially helpful if you forget to turn off, raise, or lower your thermostat settings before leaving the house. No one wants to wind up heating/cooling an empty home.
This will make a huge difference in your electric bill. Turn down the heat in the winter and the air conditioner in the summer. Try to keep your thermostat no lower than 78 degrees in the summer, and no higher than 68 degrees in the winter.
For additional savings, turn the air conditioner off in the summer when you are away, and turn the heat down to 52 degrees in the winter. If you turn the heat lower than 50 degrees you run the risk of frozen pipes in cold weather.
I personally have a Nest thermostat. It is great because it is programmable and self-learning—meaning it learns your daily routines without you having to do anything.
Another great feature on the Nest thermostat is you can lock it to prevent anyone from adjusting the temperature.
I find this very helpful when I do short term rentals with Airbnb and I am responsible for paying the electric bill. By locking my thermostat it prevents my guests from abusing the use of the heating or cooling system.
This is probably also very useful if you have children that are not energy conscious.
3. Lower Temperature On Water Heater
After your heating and cooling system, the next most expensive appliance (when it comes to electricity) is the electric water heater. The electric water heater uses a lot of electricity.
The water heater’s job is to distribute hot water throughout your house. A portion of the expense comes from the heater maintaining a store of warm water in a tank (unless you have a tankless system). By lowering the temperature a few degrees, you can shave some money off your electric bill.
To save money, set your water heater to at most 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Every 10 degree reduction in water heater temperature can save between 3–5 percent in monthly energy costs, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. You can also save some money by shortening your showers.
Finally, if you go away on vacation or otherwise spending an extended period of time away from your home, you can save some money by turning off the water heater while you’re gone.
4. Plug Out Electronics
Another easy way to reduce your electric bill is to unplug electronics when they’re not in use. Even items that are turned off pull electricity when they are plugged in.
It is easier to plug things into a power strip and unplug it when you are not using them. You especially want to do this if you leave for a couple of days, or when you go on vacation.
5. Insulate Your Home
Poor insulation will add hundreds of dollars to your electric bills over the course of a year. It will make your home cold in the winter and hot in the summer.
It’s worth the investment to add additional insulation to your home. Also, be sure to eliminate any drafts, as insulation will not stop that.
Cover drafty windows with plastic in the winter because they can be a huge source of heat loss. You can use something like this insulation kit and heavy curtains in the winter.
6. Change The Way You Do Laundry
Your washer and dryer is another appliance that uses a significant amount of electricity. Because of this, I recommend you wash your clothes in cold water (remember what I said about how much electricity your water heater uses?) and on the “quick wash” cycle. Washing on the “quick” cycle and with cold water requires less energy, which saves you money.
When I wash my clothes on the “quick” cycle, I find they still come out clean and it is less wear and tear on your clothes. If for some reason your clothes are very soiled, then I would recommend washing them on the normal cycle.
When drying, hang out bulky or heavy items on a drying rack. Also, be sure to clean your dryer lint screen before each use to help it run more efficiently.
7. Use Energy Saving Light Bulbs
Turn off the lights when they are not in use. As your current bulbs burn out, replace them with energy-saving light bulbs. Energy-saving bulbs are longer lasting and more energy-efficient than your standard bulb.
Check out this affordable 16-pack on Amazon. I suggest you buy your bulbs in bulk to save money. And it’s nice to know they come with a 3-year warranty.
8. Replace HVAC Filter Regularly
Keep your air filters clean and changed regularly in order to save energy on heating and cooling the house. Again, you should buy your filters in bulk to save money.
You can find 6 packs on Amazon for a fraction of the costs in stores, just search for the right dimensions and specs.
9. Negotiate A Better Rate
Contact your utility company and try to negotiate a better rate. There may be some cost-savings programs available to you.
You can also use a service such as Trim. Trim is a virtual personal assistant that constantly works to save you money. They analyze your spending patterns to find ways to save you money, set spending alerts, and automatically fight fees. Trim also negotiates cable, internet, phone, medical bills, cancels old subscriptions, and more.
10. Use Energy-Saving Appliances
When it is time to replace your large appliances (such as refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, and washers/dryers), consider buying the most energy-efficient styles you can afford.
(Bonus) Cut Cable And Home Phone
Okay, so this is actually a way of cutting your utility bill more than your electric bill. But, an easy way I learned how to reduce my utility bill is I eliminated cable and my home phone.
If you have a cell phone, I don’t see the need in having a home phone. I have not had a landline telephone since 2005, and instead rely only on my cell phone.
In 2012, I also got rid of my cable. I use a ROKU box to stream movies and television shows from Netflix and Hulu. However, you should be able to stream movies without a ROKU box if you have a smart TV.
Another popular streaming services besides Netflix and Hulu is Amazon Prime Video. You can get started with a FREE Trial.
If you love premium channels like HBO, STARZ, and Showtime (like me) you can subscribe directly to them and stream online without a cable subscription. If you sign up for Amazon Prime Video, you can also add premium channels if you wish. So try Amazon Prime Video for FREE and see if you like it.
As you can see, there are many ways how to save money on your electric bill. Hopefully, by taking some of my advice you can cut your electric bill in half. So, go out and try some of these tips and tricks!
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