Both homeowners and renters often are surprised by the size of their electric bills. You are in for an extra dose of sticker shock if you live in a state that enjoys hot summers, such as Texas, Florida or any of the Sun Belt states. During the hot summer months, your refrigerator gets an extra workout because the kids are home, enjoying snacks and drinks. Additionally, your air conditioner runs nonstop.
It’s not unusual for homeowners in the hottest cities to pay $200 or more a month for electricity. In a city like Houston, Texas, bills of $300-$500 are not uncommon as temperatures soar, starting as early as May. But you can reduce your electric bills substantially starting now.
First, start by choosing an energy-efficient appliance. The US Government’s Energy Star program certifies certain appliances that will protect the environment while saving consumer s money. Therefore, your first step is to look for the Energy Star certification before you make a purchase.
Energy efficiency pays off especially well when you buy a refrigerator. A smaller refrigerator typically uses less energy than a larger one. However, if you buy an energy-saving model, you may be able to keep more space cold with the same amount of electricity.
Second, reduce your electric bills by making your appliances work more efficiently. A simple way to get more benefit from every kilowatt you buy: Clean filters of every appliance that comes with a filter. Dust and dirt will interfere with the airflow of your dryer and with the cooling power of your air conditioner. That means you need to use more electricity – and get a higher electric bill – to generate the same amount of cold air.
In some parts of the US, such as Texas and Pennsylvania, you can save on your electric bills even more by choosing the lowest-cost electrical supplier.. You may get a lower rate or a lower deposit or both.