Monday, August 31, 2009
Every light in the house is gone
When I moved in I was told that the power bill for my house was often $350/month. Scary. Worse, when I called the power company to set up service they charged me a $500 deposit (equal to the largest bill the house has had). O.M.G.! So immediately upon moving in I reset all of the thermostats. Only using AC after 5:30 at night and making the default setting 78 degrees (if we're too hot we can manually turn it down and it will reset later). We've had two bills now, averaging $200, which is GREAT for the summer (tends to be my highest power usage so the bills should get cheaper). It's better, but still... So, I'm looking for more. The home already has upgraded insulation (blown into the walls) and the windows and doors have good seals. All cooking and heating is gas and the main part of our bill is electric, by a LOT, which I assume is still mostly AC as the weather has been consistently 85-90 degrees every day.
Our next step was the light bulbs. Our kids like to turn on every single light in the house and, being a newer house, the house has a lot of can lights. We counted 80 lightbulbs in the house. 80! This weekend we removed every one of them (well, except the two we can't reach) and replaced them with CFL bulbs. If the lights in the house are on an average of 4 hours a day we'd save $50/month. That's about right since some don't usually get turned on and some never get turned off. I'll settle for $30.
Next I want to look into thicker curtains, especially for the sun facing windows, to cut down on the need to cool/heat from window heat transfer.
What have you done to cut down the energy bill?