Lately, you’ve probably been hearing a lot about the various ways you can try to save some money while you continue to work from home during the global health crisis. This includes lowering your gas costs though fewer commutes to the office, or managing food costs by stocking up at the grocery store and trying new recipes—as opposed to getting takeout all the time.
Despite those many ways to save, there’s one expense you’ve likely seen go up in recent months: your energy costs.
It makes sense. You are using more electricity for lights, air conditioning and electronics. You’re spending your time on computers, cell phones, televisions and gaming systems on a far more regular basis than you likely were in previous summers.
However, there are many ways you can still lower your energy costs without a major sacrifice or any discomfort. We’ve put together this list to help you find some ways that work for you and your family as we all learn to navigate a new normal.
Throw open the blinds and curtains! Use natural light rather than overhead lights and lamps to illuminate your home. Continue these practices well into the winter months to help combat colder weather, when doing so can be assist in passive heating to help lower the strain on your home heating system.
Replace any old, inefficient incandescent bulbs with super-efficient, long-lasting LED bulbs. They use 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs. Also, be extra vigilant about turning off lights in rooms that aren’t in use.
Your washer and dryer can be top-tier energy users in your home. Here are some ways to scale that back a bit:
Wash full loads only. If you have to do a smaller load, remember to adjust the water level setting to accommodate for the lesser volume of water that’ll be required. And use cold water for washing whenever possible.
Once completed, if you’re able, try to take advantage of summer’s sun and warmth to air-dry your laundry. This also keeps your home from heating up because of the dryer, meaning your air conditioning won’t use as much energy to fight the rising temperatures caused by that residual heat.
We hear far too often that many people don’t use their programmable thermostat simply because they’re not sure how to best use it. That’s a wasted opportunity for energy savings on a daily basis! Here’s how you can look to program yours:
Cooling (summer) season:
Heating (winter) season:
Work smarter, not longer
Perhaps the most direct way to save electricity while working from home is to cut down on your screen time when you’re not actually working. With fewer office distractions, you may be able to really hone your workday by cutting your time on social media sites or surfing the web during lunch to break things up. Keep your phone on and check email regularly though, of course!
Set up a charging station at your home workspace with a smart power strip. Traditional power strips house many different devices and use only one outlet, but remember, if any devices are plugged in, they will continue to use energy regardless of whether they’re fully charged. Smart power strips can actually cut power off and save energy since they are able to detect when a device enters into standby mode. When your phone or other electronic device IS fully charged, unplug it completely. Many chargers themselves use energy when they are plugged in, even if they aren’t connected to a device.
Many devices, such as laptops, actually benefit from this practice, as excessive charging can deplete the shelf life of their battery.
You’re not stuck with your local utility for electricity and natural gas. Check out what Discount Power can do to help you manage your energy costs and save money throughout the calendar year! We offer a variety of locked-in rates that suit your lifestyle. Choose your term length, type of plan and more—we make it as easy as can be.
Take control of your energy costs by becoming a Discount Power customer, today!