I work in the Finance department of a media company, and someone who dabbles in writing of any genre.
Published February 14th 2013
Save on your power bills
Two years ago, due to an unforeseen circumstances, I had to take a couple of months of unpaid leave from work. The winter had just started and I was worried that I wouldn't be able to afford my electricity bill. With some research I started a list hoping that it would help cut the cost. As It turned out, when my bill finally arrived, it was nearly half the cost of the previous bill. I lived in a two bedroom apartment and most of my appliances didn't have the energy saving platform. So I would like to share these saving ideas to the readers.
1. Buy a thermos/flask. We normally associate this on a camping trip, but it can also be utilized at home. By not turning the kettle on each time you want a cup of tea or coffee you will save electricity. The good brand can be costly but you can even get one from the second hand shop.
2. Use a slow cooker to cook your meals. You will find that cooking in a slow cooker does not only save time but electricity as well. A slow cooker uses the same amount of electricity as a light bulb. It will also save you time and you can use a cheap cut of meat and have the best tasting food on the plate.
You also have the convenience of cooking meals in bulk. You can cook three meals in a very small cooker.
3. Turn your microwave oven off from the switch after you've used it.
4. Buy a hot water bottle and put it in your bed half an hour before you go to sleep. Just make sure that it's tightly close to prevent any leakage. These bed warmers had been used as early as the 16th century.
5. Do you know that leaving your desk top computer running 24/7 consumes $12.14 a month or $145.66 a year in electricity? Turn it off from the power point.
6. Switching the TV via the remote only puts the device in a standby mode. Again, turn it off from the switch.
7. You don't need to leave your phone charger on all the time, as you would only charge your phone every two days anyway. It's the same with your stereo and iPods.
8. Open your blinds or curtains during the day to let the sun in and it will reduce your heating requirements.
9. When the heater is on, close the door of the rooms that you are not using.
10. Wear warm clothes, rug up.
11. Turn the lights off when you leave the room.
12. Turn the heater a notch down. You will not even feel the difference.
13. Use the clothesline instead of the dryer.
14. If you can, use cold water for the washing machine, or use warm instead of hot.
15. If there are only two people in your household, try not to use the dishwasher. Or fill it up first then turn it on.
16. Have a candlelit dinner with your partner, with a dim light on in the background. It's so romantic and will save you on power too.
17. Having long hot showers is so nice, but cut the time you spent in the showers if you can.
18. Place a towel under your door to prevent the draft coming through.
19. It depends upon how many people are in your household, if you can just use the washing machine once or twice a week. Not only you'll save on the electricity, you'll save on the water too.
20. Stick this list on your fridge so you don't forget it.
It is hard to get into the routine, but once you've started, you're halfway there. We don't need to live and suffer with the cold weather, but we can adjust our lifestyle to suit our budget and we'll reap the benefits in the end.
in such a situation, I'd suggest the major saving would come from wearing more clothes and being aware that a 2400W room heater typically costs over 60c an hour to run - leave it on for 10 hours a day and there's $540 on your next 90 day bill just for one heater.
The worst trap is those lovely silent oil column radiators you just turn on and leave - they will cost you heaps to run (as above). What I use is a small portable fan heater when I'm getting dressed in mid-winter - turn it on, blow warm air up my trouserlegs and shirt to warm them up before I put them on - total about 2 minutes costing 2 cents a day.
Suggest do that instead of using the oil column radiator.
I do have a single bar 1000W radiator for the bathroom mid-winter, but after I've adapted to the first few chilly days of the season, I don't even use that anymore.
Another suggestion is to run the heater on a lower setting and investing in a warm blanket for wrapping ones legs in while sitting down. We picked up a lovely warm polar fleece blanket from the op shop last year for a measly $10 and our favourite thing is to see who gets the 'Bob the Builder' blanket first. (I'm thinking the rush for the favourite blanket also helps us to keep warm.)