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5 tips to save on utility bills this summer

by Chris Lang on December 8, 2011

saving energy

In these difficult economic times, it is even more important than ever that we find ways to conserve energy in our home. While many people think of winterizing their houses, most do not consider that the summer months can bring big energy expenses as well. Things like running cooling systems and taking extra showers can begin to add up over time. Saving energy doesn’t have to be a complicated process, and there are simple steps you can start taking today to begin cutting down on your energy consumption.

1. Use an Automated Thermostat

Using an automated thermostat can save you up to 10% on heating and cooling bills every year. The thermostat can be pre-programmed to turn the cooling system lower during the times that you are away from home, like when you are at work for instance. You can ensure that it is programmed to turn back on just before you return home, so that you don’t have to bother with turning it higher or lower when you are coming and going.

2. Keep Your Blinds Closed

During the hottest times of the day, you can save a lot of money on cooling costs by simply keeping your blinds or curtains closed. This keeps out the sun’s hot rays, thus maintaining a more stable temperature and ensuring that your air-conditioning will not be working harder than it needs to.

3. Install Efficient Water Taps

It is normal to use more water during the warmer months than you do in the colder months, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep your water bills low. There are many ways to conserve water, but one of the most effective ways to do this is by installing efficient taps throughout your home, especially in the shower where you use the most water. Other ways to conserve water include not leaving the tap running while washing dishes or brushing your teeth, and waiting for the dishwasher to be completely full before turning it on. If you use sprinklers to water your lawn, make sure that you only turn them on early in the morning or in the evening, when temperatures are lower.

4. Do Your Cooking Outside

Summer is the perfect time for cookouts and barbeques so take advantage of this and do your cooking outside whenever possible. Not only does this save on energy you would otherwise use to cook, but cooking inside can make your home hotter, which in turn causes your air conditioning to work longer and harder. Cooking outside will help you avoid this.

5. Update Your Appliances

If you can afford to you should really try to update your appliances. Whether you use small portable air conditioners or integrated home cooling and water systems, having modern appliances will make all the difference to your energy bills in the long term. Older cooling systems and air-conditioners tend to use a lot more energy than the new ones that are specially designed to be energy-efficient. This also goes for other home appliances like washing machines and refrigerators. Initially you will need to spend money on a new appliance, but it will save you a lot of money in the long run.

If you follow these five tips this summer, you will soon see your energy bills going down. So save the earth and keep your wallet happy by using these simple methods to lower your energy consumption.

Written by Peter Bird from Sydney Water Tanks – suppliers of efficient rain water tanks in the New South Wales area.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Brian December 8, 2011 at 12:06 pm

Cooking outside won’t save you money if you are using bottled gas outside and mains gas inside. This is because bottled gas costs 3 times as much as mains gas for the same effect.

My summer saving tip is to use an electric fan in the bedroom at night rather than run the air conditioning to cool most of the house

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Chris December 8, 2011 at 2:22 pm

I think Peter meant that you won’t have to turn on the kitchen rangehood fan and use air conditioning more to cool the house because it heats up when you cook, if you cook outside – but good points about the expensive bottled gas and using a fan at night, indeed! Thanks Brian!

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