If you're looking for ways to keep your costs down or stick to a leaner budget, then you may want to look at your electric bill. There are some easy steps you can take to reduce it without feeling uncomfortable or drastically altering your lifestyle. Here's a look at some simple, energy-saving tips that we recommend for residents in Austin.
1. Wash Clothes With Cold Water
Having a washer and dryer in your apartment home is really convenient, but you’ll have to pay for the electricity to heat the water if you wash on warm or hot. Most clothes will do just fine in cold water and, in fact, your colors may stay more vibrant. Look for a cold water laundry soap, since this will do a better job of removing dirt and stains.
2. Get Used To Warmer Temperatures
While sweating inside with the air conditioning completely off is not a smart idea, it's a waste of electricity to cool your apartment to 68 or 70 degrees. Experiment with turning the thermostat up one degree per week. Your body will slowly adapt to the warmer temperature, and before you know it, your apartment will feel perfectly cool at 77 or 78 degrees.
3. Use Your Blinds Properly
The faux wood blinds in your Springs Apartments home are not just for show. When the sun is shining bright, be sure to close them. Your air conditioner won't have to work as hard to keep your place cool. When winter comes and the temperatures drop, open the blinds to let the warm sunlight in and reduce your heating bill.
4. Run Large Appliances in the Evening
Electric companies have what they call "peak hours" and "off-peak hours." Off-peak hours are times when they charge less for electricity, and these hours are generally in the evening -- after about 8 p.m. Run your dishwasher, clothing washer, dryer, and any other large appliances after dark, and you'll pay less for the same results.
5. Only Wash a Full Load of Dishes
There are two types of people in this world: those who run the dishwasher nightly no matter how many dishes are in it, and those who wait until the dishwasher is completely full before run it. If you become the latter type of person, you'll save a great amount of electricity. Just give your dishes a quick rinse before loading them into the dishwasher so food doesn’t get dried on while waiting to be washed.
6. Plug Electronics Into a Power Strip
Leaving items like televisions and laptops plugged in when they're not in use is a waste of electricity, as these machines slowly drain power even when switched off. Plug them all into a power strip, and switch the strip off when you're not home.
Do you have more ideas for reducing electricity use in Austin? Let us know how you keep your power bills in check by commenting below!