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Last December I moved into a new apartment. In fact, it’s my first apartment. It’s pretty exciting! No longer am I subject to the rules and regulations of my parents or other such overlords. No, I’m free to experience life as intended! I have my living room with my couch I can eat on! No elbows on the dinner table? Hah! On my table I firmly place BOTH elbows when I dine! No jumping on the bed? My downstairs neighbors can only pray for such luxurious silence! It’s my bed I’m jumping on, my couch I’m eating on, my toilet seat I’ll be leaving up, and as I so horrifically discovered, my own energy bill I’ll be paying for.
Now, you may see my jumping on the bed, my eating on the couch, and my haphazard elbow placement, and assume that I live lavishly. It’s merely a facade. I’m a modest man, of modest means. I can’t afford a brand new couch. That’s what I have a Febreze budget for. But I can’t Febreze my power bill.
What I can do; however, in celebration of National Cut you Power Bill Day, is finding ways to shave some dollars off my electricity bill. And since I’m so generous and magnanimous and humble, I'm going to share a few of those tips so that you too can place your elbows anywhere with reckless abandon!
LED Bulbs can last 25 times longer than regular incandescent bulbs and use at least 75% less power. Even changing only the most used bulb in your house can have a big impact.
Set the mood and save some dimes by installing dimmers and sliding them down to lower settings when you don't need as much light. If your landlord won't let you mess with the electrical, you can get smart bulbs that let you dim the lights from your smartphone.
Some of your devices continuously use power even when they're turned off. With power strips, you can completely cut off power to these devices which could save anywhere from 5% to 10% on electricity. Better yet, you can get a smart power strip that automatically cuts power when a device is “turned off.”
Low flow showerheads can deliver a strong stream of water but use less than 2 gallons per minute. Using less water when you shower means your water heater won't have to heat up as much water so often. Better yet, if you're in the market for a new water heater, consider an electric tankless heater that only heats as much water as you use instead of continuously keeping several gallons hot throughout the day.
While we’re on the topic of new appliances: Energy Star rated appliances meet efficiency standards set by the government. Replacing an old dryer with a new Energy Star Certified dryer could save you $250 over the life of the appliance.
Now, you could go off-grid: sleep outdoors, hunt for your food, bathe in streams. It would drastically cut your power bill for sure, but I heard watching a lot Netflix on your phone is bad for your neck, and we both know you're not going to cancel your Netflix. Instead, let's just follow these tips and keep ourselves (and our wallets) comfortable.
If you'd like to learn about more ways to save money on your power bill, check out this post on NerdWallet