What makes your energy bill so high?

Has your electrical bill skyrocketed recently? 

You may not know this but our appliances suck up lots of energy when in use. So much so that it’s enough to raise your bill dramatically depending on the usage of each appliance. Take a refrigerator for example. A fridge is necessary for keeping your food fresh. Many don’t take into consideration how much energy it uses because it is necessary. A typical air conditioning/ heating unit accounts for 46% of your energy bill. That’s a large amount.

The changes in seasons also play a role in our energy consumption. Our electricity consumption is highly affected by the changes in weather. Think about it. We use our air conditioner much more during the warmer months compared to other seasons. If we are not careful, we end using too much energy which can cause a huge spike in our electrical bills.

Continue reading to see which appliances have the highest energy consumption and how to reduce it.

So, which appliances use the most electricity in your home?

Here’s a breakdown of the average electrical consumption of an American family:

Air conditioner/heater: 46%

Water heating: 14%

Lighting: 12% 

Washer: 6% – 7%

Dryer: 6%- 7%

Refrigerator: 4%

Electric oven:  3% – 4%

TV and media equipment: 4%

Dishwasher: 2%

Computer: 1% 

Air Conditioning and Heating

Without a doubt, HVAC systems in your houses use most of the energy in the house. Air conditioners and heaters give you the comfort you want, but that comes at a cost. You can reduce the workload on your HVAC unit using the following tips:

  • Have maintenance done on your air conditioner and furnace yearly
  • Set the thermostat to 68F in the winter and 78F in the summer
  • Don’t obstruct any air vents
  • Prevent duct clogging by getting air duct cleaning
  • Use warm clothing in winter to reduce your heater usage

TIP: To save some cash, you can install a programmable thermostat and set it backward by 7 to 10 degrees from their normal temperature for 8 hours a day and it’ll help you save up to 10% annually.

Water Heating

The heating of water for use in the home is really expensive because it continues running even when you aren’t in need of hot water. In order to have hot water when you want, the tank is refilled automatically and heated until it reaches a set temperature. Tankless water heaters were invented to reduce the waste of energy compared to traditional water heaters.

Tips on how to reduce cost:

  • Set the heater to about 120F or less, every 10-degree reduction in temperature can save between 3 to 5 percent of electricity cost
  • Insulate the hot water pipes to avoid heat loss
  • Switch off your water heater when you go on a trip
  • Install water-conserving showerheads
  • Install faucet aerators

Lighting

Your home lighting accounts for a large amount of electricity used in the home. Now it finally makes sense why our mothers would yell at us to turn off the light when we’re not using it. Reduce home lighting energy consumption by doing the following:

  • Turn off the lights when you don’t need them
  • Invest in LED bulbs that help in energy conservation
  • Try to use natural light as often as you can
  • Invest in motion detectors for outdoor lighting so that the light goes on only when there is movement

Washing Machine 

Those who wash more often or have a bigger home are inherently going to have a higher electrical bill. That doesn’t mean that hope is lost. There are still ways that anyone can save more. For example, choosing the right size of the washing machine is important in achieving energy savings. To save more on your electrical bill, keep these tips in mind:

  • Use the cold-water option often while washing
  • Wash multiple loads of clothes at once to avoid unnecessary washing cycles
  • Avoid overfilling your washer. This can cause it to be inefficient

Follow these tips and you’ll see the difference it makes when you wash clothes.

Dryer

If you want to save the most energy possible when drying clothes, it’s ideal to use racks or clotheslines instead of a clothes dryer. We understand that dryers are very convenient so if you own a one and use it frequently, here are some ways to reduce its energy usage:

 

  • Avoid overfilling. This can slow down the drying process and cause greater energy consumption
  • Remove lint after each cycle or load
  • Use a rack or clothesline to dry smaller articles of clothing

Refrigerator

Refrigerators are necessary but they are big-time energy consumers. They’re always plugged in and have to maintain a set temperature at all times. It’s basically an air conditioner box for food that works all day and all night. As you know it doesn’t make sense to turn off your refrigerator, but you can cut down on your refrigerator’s energy consumption with these tips:

  • Set the refrigerator to the optimal temperature.
  • Always clean around the refrigerator both behind and under to maintain good airflow.
  • Invest in modern energy-efficient models and brands.
  • The contents of the fridge should be arranged for maximum efficiency.

Appliances can be huge energy hogs if we don’t regulate our usage of them. Although many of these electronics are necessary for comfortable living, there are various methods to reduce our energy consumption and save money. Start saving electricity with our tips and you’ll see the results on your next bill.