Welcome back to our series on easy ways to save money on your monthly utility bill. We know those higher summer temperatures will have you crankin’ up the AC, so we’ve got more helpful tips to offset the increase you’re likely to see in your bill. Last time, we covered energy-efficient lightbulbs, unplugging electronics when not in use, refrigerator maintenance, and phone apps that track energy consumption. Read on for more money-saving tricks from your San Marcos home electrician.
I Second that E-Motion
Motion sensors are a great way to ensure you’re not wasting energy. While most of us intend to turn off the lights before leaving the room (or the house), we can be forgetful. Motion sensor switches help out by turning lights on when someone enters the room and off again following a certain period of inactivity (you can determine how long you want to wait before this happens). It’s estimated that motion sensors save the average household $100/year. In addition to this savings, motion sensors offer a few other benefits: installing them at your home’s entrances means no more fumbling around in the dark when you come home late at night and also serves as a deterrent to home intruders.
Dryer Dos and Don’ts
Your electric dryer uses about $85 a year. But if you’re not taking proper care of this appliance, you’re adding to that cost by up to $25. We recommend cleaning your lint screen between every load as well as cleaning the exhaust duct annually. This is an important safety precaution as well- allowing lint to build up is a common cause of house fires. Other tips for dryer efficiency? Dry loads of laundry back-to-back so the dryer doesn’t cool down (and then waste energy heating back up) in between uses. And stop the dryer as soon as clothes are dry- many newer models have sensors for this- to save money on your bill and keep your clothes in good condition.
Water Heater Wisdom
We’ve talked in previous blogs about the benefits of a tankless hot water heater. If you haven’t made the switch yet, you can still save money by installing a timer on your traditional model. If, for example, you’re away from home during the day, you don’t need to waste energy keeping water hot during that interval. Install an electric timer switch and program a daily or weekly schedule to tell it when you need hot water. It’ll be ready to go when you are and save you around $25/year. Also, check the temperature setting on your heater- it should be between 130 and 140 degrees. Finally, how long has it been since you drained the sediment from your tank? Allowing it to build up means that your water heater has to work harder to heat through all that sediment before it even gets to the water. Home electricians recommend draining twice a year to eliminate this issue.
We’ll be back with more tips in a future post. In the meantime, remember that your San Marcos electrician is always available for an inspection or to answer any questions about how to keep your home running at peak efficiency. Whether you need help with an installation or want the security of our Peace of Mind Maintenance Program, we’re here for you this summer and all year long.