A girl opens her window to cool down her home and save money on her energy bills.
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Keep those bills in check

9 Tips for Saving Money on Energy Bills This Summer

Ashley Robinson
June 12, 2024

Summer is coming, and there’s a good chance that means one thing: expensive energy bills. When the heat rises, so does electricity usage, and in some areas of the country, the cost of electricity also rises. So with the promise of a hot summer ahead, here are nine tips for reducing your household energy usage that will help keep the bills in check this summer!

  1. Do Some Maintenance on HVAC or AC Units

Cooling systems like your HVAC or window AC units all function better when they’re clean and well-maintained because they rely on air flow. If they’re dirty, they have to work harder to cool the air, and this takes more energy. It may be tempting to simply kick the cool air on as soon as it gets hot, but before the real summer heat comes, give your cooling system a one-over. This includes cleaning or replacing any filters, making sure coils and fins aren’t bent, and making sure there’s no debris or mold accumulated around the condenser or inside the unit.

For HVAC systems, you may want to consider hiring a professional to assess and clean the whole system, but replacing the filters is a great DIY place to start. And cleaning window AC units is a very simple DIY project!

  1. Do Some Simple Home Setup

There are a few simple but effective things you can set up around the house to help lower your AC bill all summer. Sealing up any pesky air leaks in the home, especially in spaces like attics and around door frames, will help keep cool air inside and cut your AC energy usage down. Installing energy-saving window treatments can help moderate heat that comes in from the sun. And using fans can make a huge difference in circulating air, creating a cool breeze, and making your space feel cooler without cranking the AC.

  1. Get Smart with Your Thermostat

Simply turning your thermostat up 8-10 degrees for 8 hours a day can save you 10% on energy bills, so that’s a great place to start. But if you want to maximize comfort while also saving energy, the easiest thing to do is get a smart thermostat. This will allow you to turn the thermostat up while nobody is home and while sleeping, then back down to a comfortable level while you’re home and awake. Smart thermostats can also be linked with OhmConnect to take advantage of OhmHours!  

  1. Unplug Energy Vampires and Turn Off The Lights

We all know that leaving lights on when you don’t need them wastes energy, but it turns out that a lot of other appliances and electronics continue to use small amounts of energy when they’re off but still plugged in. These so-called “energy vampires” can suck up a lot of electricity! Get in the habit of unplugging things like coffee makers, hair dryers and chargers that aren’t in use, and of course, turn off lights when you don’t need them!

  1. Avoid Peak Hours Using OhmHours or AutoOhms

Whether you’re enrolled with OhmConnect or have tiered time-of-use pricing through your electric company, you’ll save money by cutting your electricity usage during peak hours. With OhmHours and AutoOhms, you’ll be notified when prices spike, so you can adjust your usage easily. Otherwise, check out your electric bill to see when peak pricing is, then make a plan to cut usage during those hours. Turning off extra lights, delaying running the dishwasher or dryer, temporarily turning off the AC, or waiting to charge your EV are all ways to cut back on electric usage during peak hours.

  1. Lower The Temperature on Your Water Heater

Water heating accounts for about 18% of the average household’s annual energy expenses, so turning down the temperature can save a lot on your monthly bills! While a lot of heaters come pre-set around 140°F, the Department of Energy advises that the most energy-efficient temperature for your water heater is 120°F. Turning down the temperature is a quick DIY project that could save you a lot on energy bills!

  1. Try Using Cold Water

Given the high cost of heating water, you can save a lot of money by switching some of your daily habits to use cold water. Especially in the summer when the ambient temperature of water coming out of the taps isn’t ice-cold, you can safely and effectively wash dishes and laundry in cool or cold water. You can take cold showers to cool down and save energy as well. This is better for your energy bills and often better for your clothing and skin, too!

  1. Get Outside the House

One simple trick for saving on energy bills is to hang out somewhere other than your house! Take advantage of warm weather by getting outside into nature, or on especially hot days where you don’t want to blast your AC all day, consider spending some time at a library, museum, or even a coffee shop, where the AC is free. Just don’t forget to close the blinds, turn off the lights, and turn up the thermostat before you leave the house!

  1. Use Natural Ventilation at Night

If you live in an area with cooler evenings, take advantage of that and use natural ventilation to cool your house down. This is where you encourage air flow through your home to draw in cooler air from outside and push warm air out of the home. This can be as simple as opening windows and turning on some fans instead of turning on the AC, which saves energy and also helps keep the air inside fresh.

With energy prices on the rise, summertime electric bills can be a real drag. But with some small adjustments to your routine (and maybe with some help from OhmConnect), you can cut down your household’s electricity usage and your bills while still staying cool and comfortable.

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