Conservation Tips: Lower Energy Bills

Learn some quick and painless tricks to lowering power bill. These ideas will save you money.

Whether it is the cold winter winds or the hot summer sun, it seems like there is no protection from high energy bills. While many people are conscientious about turning off lights as they leave rooms, there are plenty of simple ideas that can provide a much larger monetary reward.

The first line of defense between your house and the great outdoors is actually outside. By planting trees along the side of your house in which the prevailing winds blow, you will protect your home from a great deal of weather. The sun beating down in the summer or gusty winds in the winter both rob your home of fuel efficiency. While planting trees is a long-term solution, as it will take several years for the trees to mature to a respectable size, an immediate aid to winter's chilly winds is plastic. On any cool morning go around to all of your windows and stand for a minute. Can you feel a gentle breeze blowing in? The same small spaces that allow that cold wind in are also letting your heated air out. You can purchase rolls of plastic made specifically for covering windows. It adheres to the window with small plastic strips and is remarkably clear and easy to see through.

To keep out the baking sun of summer that not only heats your house but can bleach your furniture; mini blinds are an economical choice. A more long-term choice is windows with argon gas between the layers, as well as UV tinting. This would only be done as you are replacing windows anyway; mini blinds are a perfectly efficient aid until then.

Keep the thermostat set to a comfortable temperature. You should just settle on a temperature that both you and your spouse can live with and stick with that. When your heating or cooling unit are constantly having to work hard by kicking on and off it adds up quickly.

Another common waste of energy is an outdated, inefficient appliance. If your appliances are over ten to fifteen years old, you may want to look at replacement rather than repairs as the need arises. Technology has caused such an advance in energy efficiency in recent years that you can almost guarantee yourself savings with new appliances.

Another easy tip that will also increase the safety around the house is making sure that your water heater is not set above 120ยบ. This not only saves energy but also greatly reduces the risk of scalding.

While these are some basic and easy ideas that anyone can easily use, there are several more that you may want to try. Scatter rugs are available for around a dollar a piece at discount stores and greatly reduce the chill if rolled up and placed in front of all doors that lead outside. Get everyone in the house a pair of house slippers and set the thermostat up a notch. Use ceiling fans or oscillating fans in the summer and shut the curtains to block out the sun before the room heats up. By gradually integrating some of these ideas into your life, you will save money without much inconvenience

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