Everybody knows the basics of saving energy.
You already know, for instance, that shorter showers are important for reducing your power and water usage.
You already know that you need to turn off the lights when you leave a room.
Even when you implement all of the basic stuff, your energy consumption (and the resulting bill) is still too high for your liking.
Here are some suggestions you might not yet have thought to try.
1. Go to the Source: Your Power Company
Most of us live in states with highly regulated energy markets. This means that we don’t get to choose who supplies our power as we get to choose how to deal with the company that supplies our power…and most of the time we simply grimace at the bills and then pay them anyway.
In some states, though, like Delaware, Illinois, and Texas, the energy market is competitive, which allows you to shop around and choose the best and most affordable provider for your budget, just like you would any other product or service.Residents in these states use comparison shopping sites.
Click here to learn about rates and schedules and options for choosing renewable energy sources instead of petroleum based power. If your state is competitive, shop around for green providers who offer you a good rate!
If you don’t live in a competitive state, don’t worry; there are still plenty of things you can try.
2. Go to the Source: Your Devices
Everybody knows that one of the best ways to save power is to not turn something on unless you’re using it and to unplug most things, at the very least, at night to avoid vampire power. But do you know how much power all of your stuff actually uses?
Use a device like the Killawatt to find out exactly how much energy everything uses so that you can come up with lower powered alternatives. For example, why would you use an energy sucking slow cooker, when you can slow cook the same food in a gas-powered oven for much less?
Do you really need your router plugged in all night? Are you using the Wi-Fi while you sleep?
Finding out exactly what is inflating your power bill is a great way to drastically reduce how much you spend on your utilities every month. One woman cut her bill down by 30% using this method and some common sense!
3. Use Your Own Person Power
Why are you using a fancy mixer when your own muscles and a spoon will accomplish the same goal? Why are you driving to the store for herbs and veggies when you can grow your own using your own property and time?
These are just a couple of basic ways to use your own personal power instead of the municipal supply to get things done.
Why not take this one step further?
In Portland, Oregon, there is a shop that has customers pedal bikes to power the blenders that will make their smoothies and other beverages.
Why not create a similar setup in your own home? You might not be able to pedal enough to power the refrigerator, but you can power your own smaller appliances, you can create enough power to charge mobile devices.
If you don’t like pedaling, you can try walking. Building a treadmill power source isn’t much different than building one for a bike. If nothing else, your walking and running may be enough to power the treadmill while you exercise.
Find ways to use your own power to power your stuff!
4. Switch to a Bidet
This is the only direct instruction you’ll get here.
Toilet paper is terrible for the environment. It contributes to deforestation, is not reusable or recyclable, wastes water, etc.
A bidet will get you clean without requiring you to go through roll after roll of toilet paper every day. If you cannot afford to switch to a bidet, you might consider using cloth hankies instead of toilet paper.
The fewer times you flush your toilet, the better for your utility bills. Of course, you’ll have to weigh the cost of the extra laundry against the damage done by toilet paper.
If you simply must use toilet paper, use gray water you collect to flush the toilet instead of using fresh water from the tank.
Look, everybody knows the basics of reducing energy consumption and, by extension, their power bills. Sometimes, though, you have to go to extremes and get a little creative. Use the tips in this article to help you do that and watch those utility bills drop!