I’m really very excited. We’ve managed to reduce our electricity bill by one third which has made a huge impact on our budget.
So how did we do it?
The biggest single change was no more tumble drier, which as we have no outside washing line involved a large scale clean up of our carport, getting pest control in to deal with the red back infestation in the backyard and then we were able to put clothes airers outside and hang washing from the carport supports.
We consolidated our living space into one area of the home (moving our TV and couch into the playroom). This means there is only one space (playroom/kitchen) to heat / cool. The playroom has 6 fluorescent lights and they sure do suck a lot of power, we swapped the existing 70 watt tubes for 30 watt tubes and I also put electrical tape over the light switches so only one row (2 tubes) can be turned on. We also put in LED fairy lights on timers, these switch on about 8pm and progressively turn off at 10pm, 11pm, midnight and 1am – serving as a visual cue to husband and I that it is bedtime :), they use barely any electricity and remove the temptation for the girls to turn the big fluorescent lights on.
In kitchen we were able to swap the smaller fluorescent tubes for LED tubes that have a motion sensor, so they dim when no-one is moving in the room (thus using less electricity). You can also get motion sensor LED tubes that turn off when there is no motion, great for carparks, school hallways etc.
Throughout the rest of the house we have swapped existing lighting for power saving globes and installed timers wherever possible.
I got the fridge and freezer resealed and they are both running much more efficiently than in the past. The Seal-A-Fridge person even readjusted our fridge door as it hadn’t been closing properly.
Natural heating and cooling costs nothing, so over summer (other than those terrible heatwave days) we left the AC off. I’ve invested in good slippers and dressing gowns for everyone so we don’t need to use as much heating this winter.
We put blankets over windows were there were no curtains to help keep house cool in summer and were we couldn’t put blankets (kitchen) husband has used window film, I was amazed at the huge difference this made to the amount of heat that could get in during summer.
Sealing gaps under doors is our next mission, the house we rent used to have shag carpet throughout and so there are gaps over an inch high under every door. Regular door snakes just roll under the doors, but we have been able to buy door seals for the laundry and one bedroom.
I’m reminding everyone to turn off lights, make sure fans / heaters are switched off when we leave, shut doors, use natural light from windows during the day rather than switch lights on, turn TV / computer screens off when not in use etc. Every little bit counts and it adds up.
What steps have you taken to reduce your electricity bill?