Your electric utility company can help lower your power rates in several ways. These changes could save you hundreds of dollars each year!
Your electricity bill is based on the amount of energy you use, called your kilowatt-hour (kWh) rate. Understanding how you use power can help you make intelligent decisions and find ways to reduce your costs.
Reduce Your Energy Consumption
Reducing energy consumption is an excellent way to save money and help the environment. It can reduce your carbon footprint, decrease water consumption, and help prevent air pollution from machinery and vehicles.
Reductions in electricity usage also benefit the economy because they decrease demand. In the long term, this results in lowered electricity costs and longer equipment lifespans.
In addition, electric utility services like West Penn power rates might help you find a great electricity provider and pay the lowest possible rate for your electricity.
Another straightforward way to reduce your power bills is to turn off unnecessary lights and appliances. This simple but effective step can dramatically cut your energy costs.
Another great energy-saving tip is unplugging electronics and appliances when not used. This helps eliminate “phantom” or standby power that these devices suck up, which will lower your power bill significantly.
To make sure your home is as energy efficient as possible, hire an energy audit to identify and fix problems. Sealing gaps around windows and doors is also essential to decrease the heat that leaks into your home.
Turn Off Unnecessary Lights and Appliances
One of the most overlooked ways to lower your power rates is to turn off unnecessary lights and appliances. These are the most significant electricity users, accounting for over 40% of your monthly power bill.
Electricity costs can skyrocket if you must be more careful, so reducing the energy you use is a great way to save money on your electric bill. Even the most superficial changes can add up and help reduce carbon emissions contributing to climate change.
In addition to turning off the lights, unplug any electrical items that aren’t in use. These include computers, printers, TVs, and video game consoles, which don’t continue to draw power after being turned off.
This is known as “phantom” power and can cost you significant money over time. The amount of phantom power depends on the number of devices in your home and how they’re used.
Another thing you can do to save money is to switch to more energy-efficient light bulbs. This is a simple, effective way to lower your power rates and extend the life of your bulbs.
Install Energy-Efficient Appliances
Installing energy-efficient appliances is the easiest way to save on your power bills. These models use ten to 50 percent less electricity than standard models and help lower your carbon footprint.
These standards compel manufacturers to design products that consume fewer resources, which reduces the need for fossil fuel-fired power plants and decreases greenhouse gas emissions from appliances and building equipment. Since 1987, these standards have avoided 2.3 billion tons of CO2 emissions.
Another benefit of energy-efficient products is that they help to conserve water. Some appliances, such as dishwashers, use a fraction of the water older models require.
Finally, some suppliers offer time-of-use rates, which charge more for electricity during peak hours and are cheaper during off-peak times. You can save money on your power bill by ensuring you don’t run significant appliances during these times.
Switch to Energy-Efficient Lighting
Changing to energy-efficient lighting is one of the best ways to save money on your power bills. These bulbs use 25-80% less energy than traditional incandescent lights and last longer than their old counterparts.
They also don’t contain mercury or lead, making them a better environmental choice. Some companies even offer free home energy checks to help you find where you can cut back on your power usage.
When you’re ready to make the switch, start by evaluating the lighting in your home. This includes the fixtures, lamps, and ceiling fans in your kitchen, bedrooms, and bathrooms.
You can get a good idea of how much energy you use by calculating the watts in each light bulb. That translates to how many kilowatt hours (kWh) it operates in an hour.
Once you know how much your lighting uses, it’s easy to figure out how to reduce your energy consumption and lower your power rates. Simply by turning off your lights when they’re not in use, you can save up to 0.4 cents per kWh.
Then, consider switching to LED or CFL bulbs. These bulbs are much more durable than incandescents, so they’re less likely to break or burn out when you bump them against something.
They offer a variety of colors and tones, depending on your style. Some are reminiscent of the yellowish hues of incandescents, while others emit more blue-like light for a softer feel.
Install Energy-Efficient Windows
Installing energy-efficient windows can help lower your power rates by significantly reducing the amount of electricity that goes into heating and cooling your home. In addition, they can also make your home more comfortable in both the summer and winter.
One of the essential parts of a new window is the frame. The quality of the material used for your window frames will impact how much energy they keep in or out. The best energy-efficient structures will have high levels of insulation, meaning you won’t need to rely on your furnace or air conditioner as much to maintain your desired temperature in your home.
Another factor that helps make your windows more energy efficient is the type of glass. Energy-efficient windows often have double or triple panes of glass, low-e coatings, argon or krypton gas fills between the panes, and window pane spacers that help keep heat in your home during the winter and cold out during the summer.
Choosing the right windows for your climate can be a challenging decision. Consider how much solar heat you want to keep in your home, which side of the house gets the most sunlight, and whether tinted windows are an option.