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Seven Ways to Save on Your Utility Bill

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The price of everything keeps going up and it seems like there is no end in sight! We all need to find ways to save the green to be able to keep our budgets afloat. Here are seven ways to save energy and the green from your wallet.

Although this is not a complete list of energy savings tips, by implementing these simple changes to your everyday schedule, you’ll see immediate savings on your utility bill.

1. Be a Kilo-watt Saver

As with any resolution, saving electricity will take a little getting used to. For starters, turn off lights when you leave a room. Turning off electrical devices when not in use can save a bundle on your electric bill. Computers, printers, modems, satellite dishes, VCR’s, TV’s, and other electronic devices use electricity even when they are switched off. Unplugging them from an outlet will ensure that they are not burning up your paycheck. If possible, eliminate an extra freezer or pop/beer refrigerator in the garage. These appliances can add 10-30% to your electric bill.

2. Program Your Home to Save

Yes it’s true! You can add a programmable thermostat to turn the heat and also the air conditioning on and off to save on your electric bill. By turning these units off when no one is home and by regulating the temperature of your home, you can certainly see a 5-20% decrease on your monthly electric bill.

3. Wash Away the Wattage Use

One key to saving energy is to load the washer, dryer and dishwasher completely before running the appliances. By washing your clothes in cold water, you can see a 50-75% saving in energy use. Clean the dryer’s lint basket before loading the next laundry load. Many dryers now have an auto-sensing drying setting that will turn the unit off when the clothes are dry.

4. Hot Water Blues

Nothing feels better than a hot shower in the morning, but extended time using all of that hot water will cost you. Limit shower times and the temperature that you use and you’ll see a dramatic savings in the electric hot water heater energy cost. Showers and laundry can easily account for 60-75% of the water heating costs. An inexpensive way to save is to add a low flow shower head. This limits the amount of water coming out of the shower head.

Dishwashers require hot water to perform at their peak performance, but you can save money by washing dishes by hand. The water usage may be about the same, but you’re not using an electric device.

5. Adjusting Water Temperature to Save

Turn the water heater temperature to the middle setting at around 120° in order to keep the unit from wasting electricity. By wrapping the hot water piping with insulation, you’ll make you system efficient. Just these simple steps can save you 10% on heating costs.

6. Hoarding Heaters and Air Conditioners

Furnaces can heat you out of house and home. Having a dirty filter in your furnace will cut the furnace’s efficiency in half. By installing a new filter that costs between three to seven dollars, the furnace can work with ease and save you money.

Try shutting off registers in unused rooms and close their doors. Why would you heat or cool a room that you're not using?

Central air outdoor condensers should be cleaned with a garden hose to clean out dirt and debris. Caution: Never attempt this without first shutting down the unit and disconnecting the power from the unit. Remember, safety first!

7. Energy Saving Investments that Pay

Energy Star® rated appliances use 20-50% less energy than standard models. The savings are even greater when compared to the antique units some of us have managed to keep running for 20-30 years. When you consider the new Whirlpool® Duet front load washers use 33% of the water that standard washers use and can do three times as many clothes per load, you can quickly see how the savings will add up.

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