Sunday, December 14, 2008

$aving on Your Electric Bill

The news tonight let Nebraskans know that our natural gas bill will be decreased 20% in the next year. In the same breath the newsperson said our electric bills were going up nearly $9. per month. Good for us we have gas heat, but we still run a lot of stuff on electrity, like the $tove and dryer. I found some money-$aving tip$ today.

All those gadgets you leave plugged in all day co$t you--even when they’re not in use. Standby energy use accounts for 5% to 10% of all home energy consumption and costs the average household $125 a year, says Ronnie Kweller, a spokeswoman with the Alliance to Save Energy. Understandably, there are some items that are just too annoying to unplug all the time, including cable boxes, microwaves and other appliances with clocks. Plug other items that you use frequently, such as your computer or television, into a power strip that can be switched off before you leave the house.

Leaving your cell phone charger plugged in all the time uses electricity! This was a wake up call for me. We have three in our house, four if Elijah's using the one for the phone he plays with. I suppose my camera cord takes power, too then? Ugh.

One other helpful hint: Enable your computer’s “sleep mode” rather than letting it go to a screen saver. That small gesture can save up to $75 a year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

For ways to reduce the power drain of commonly-used gadgets, read the story here.


  1. Hey Cheryl - thanks for the tips.

    I'm actually guilty of leaving my laptop on all the time so I can run over and input when the ideas strike. I'll have to check my settings.

    We're 4 mls from the gas line, so we have electricty for power but use oil (diesel) for heat. It's a nice warm heat as opposed to the dry heat we had in the all electric house we had in Ontario.

    Of course, nothing beats a wood burning stove, especially when you're out crunching on the snow with the hint of wood smoke in the air...

  2. Thanks for the tips Cheryl. Very good ideas for all of us. We have 3 cell phones and also a headset plugged in for each. Just those things are a lot of wasted energy.

  3. Those power strips with the on/off switch are great for things like your cell phone charger (and camera charger).

    Also a reminder to unplug the toaster and coffee pot when not in use. Huge energy suckers there!