We’ve been in our new home for about 2 weeks now. I’ve had the chance to put our most used stuff away in their proper place and we’ve been enjoying getting into the swing of things! This includes being conscious of how we’re using our electricity in our bigger home.
Thanks to BC Hydro’s fantastic electricity tracking tools, we’re able to pick the best ways to save electricity. One thing I’ve noticed is that on laundry day (Monday), our energy usage does a big jump. Because of this, I’ve started using cold water with most of the washes.
We also have a programmable thermostat in our new home so I’ve programmed the temperature to be cooler at night while we’re sleeping. I’ve also been turning the heat down if we are going to be out all day.
All that to say, BC Hydro has a list of 21 little things that add up to big energy savings that I’ve been putting to use. Here are my favourites:
Turn off unnecessary lights
Two 100-watt incandescent bulbs switched off for an average of two hours per day could save you $12 over a year. Save $12
Use natural light
A single south-facing window can illuminate 20 to 100 times its area. Turning off one 60-watt bulb for four hours a day is a $9 saving over a year. Save $9
Take shorter showers
Hot water is expensive. If two people in your home cut their shower time by a minute each, you could save $30 over a year. Save $30
Turn water off when shaving, washing hands, brushing teeth
Reduce your hot water usage by 5% to save about $21. Save $21
Fix that leaky faucet
Fixing a hot water leak in your faucet can save up to $33 per year in energy costs. Learn how to fix that leak. Save $33
Unplug unused electronics
Standby power can account for 10% of an average household’s annual electricity use. Unplug unused electronics and small appliances to save $50 a year. Save $50
Manage your thermostat
If you have electric heat, lower your thermostat by two degrees to save 5% on your heating bill. Lowering it five degrees could save 10%. If you have a programmable thermostat, program it to lower the heat at night or when you’re at work all day. Save $72
Be strategic with window coverings
Promote airflow through your home and block the afternoon sun. You could save you up to $10 (2 fans) or $45 (1 window unit AC) during the summer. Save $45
Run full loads
Cut one load of wash per week, even if you’re already using cold water only, and you could save $30 a year on your laundry costs. Save $30
Wash laundry in cold
By switching from hot to cold water for an average of three loads per week, you could save up to $27 per year on your energy bill. Save $27
Hang dry your laundry
If you do eight loads of laundry a week and use your clothesline for 50% of those clothes, you could save $47 a year. I hang a lot of my husband’s clothes so they don’t shrink! Save $47
Be efficient with refrigeration
Keep your fridge and freezer at their ideal temperature. For your fridge this is between 2°C and 3°C and your freezer should be at -18°C. Save $25
Skip the heat-dry setting for the dishwasher
That heat-dry setting is expensive. De-select it and, based on one load of dishes a day, save up to $37 for the year. Save $37
Use the microwave, slow cooker or toaster oven
A microwave takes 15 minutes to do the same job as 1 hour in an oven. Use a microwave, slow cooker or Instant Pot instead of your oven 4 times a week and save $20/year. Save $20
Because I’m big on fuss-free meals, I’m putting my slow cooker to good use saving us electricity. I also told you I had a recipe for Slow Cooker Taco Chicken! It’s so easy and you can put it together in no time!
- 2 Chicken Breasts
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1 Tbsp Taco seasoning Adjust to your personal preference
- Salt + Pepper if desired
- Place chicken at the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Pour Chicken broth on top of the chicken.
- Sprinkle Taco seasoning over everything.
- Cook on high for 3- 4 hours.
- Shred with a fork when cooked through.
You can also replace the chicken broth with crushed tomatoes.
Now it’s your turn. I’d love to know your tips for saving electricity! What do you find makes the biggest difference on your bill?