I’ve been working on reducing my electricity bills this year and I’m proud to say I’ve slashed them in half. Prior to moving back into an apartment, we were paying about $180 per month on electricity alone. Some of that was due to living in an inefficient rental house with drafty windows and half the house wired onto one breaker. Yet, some of that expense was due to my own behavior. Behavior that cost me quite a bit of money.

Here’s what I knew I had to change to save some bucks:

  • My home office. We have two desk tops, one lap top, one netbook, one external share drive, one battery backup, and two printers. That’s a lot of plugged-in gear.
  • Home temperature. We finally have central air and very good insulation, this isn’t so much my behavior as just making a better choice.

Keeping the computers on all night long was thought to be better for them. Mr. LH always assumed that is helped them retain their memory, or something to that effect. Having them hooked up to our battery pack showed us that they were energy suckers that were draining our bank accounts. Now every night we turn off the computers. We’ve also gotten into the habit of keeping the printers and laptop off until we need to use them. No point in wasting energy for things that aren’t being used.

For five years we lived in a rental house without central air. Most of the year, it wasn’t a problem. However, during July and August when a high of 90’s to 100-degree day hit, we’d swelter even though our window unit would run at maximum capacity. Lacking any insulation, the window unit only cooled about 5 feet of the room it was in. Choosing to move to a newer apartment with central air and really good insulation has resolved this problem. Not only do we not need to run our air very often, we can set the thermostat to 79 degrees and stay quite cool. Purchasing a sun shade for our west-facing patio has also helped tremendously. It’s one of the reasons we can set the thermostat so high, yet remain so cool.

Reducing our monthly electric bill from $180 to $90 has only inspired me to keep on finding ways to conserve electricity.

What do you do to save on monthly utility bills?