Electricity is expensive these days, and while we are all trying to stretch our energy dollars as far as we can, repeated rate hikes have mean higher than average power bills for the majority of energy consumers. Sometimes we might even prefer to walk in the dark if it means we might pay less for our energy use!
Thankfully, it is not necessary for you to try to function in a dark house. There are a number of things that you can do to lower your energy bills while keeping you safe from stubbed toes. All you need is a little information. Most people will spend the bulk of their energy dollars for heating and cooling their homes. Almost half of a typical power bill is spent on temperature control.
While it is true that this is a necessity, there are some things that you can do that will help to keep your overall power bill more manageable. Setting the thermostat to a different temperature can take a lot of the strain off of the air conditioning and heating units of a house.
It is also important to remember that the temperature is only one of the factors that determines how hard your heating or cooling units are working. If there is a leak somewhere in the house, you could be letting warm air out of your home that could result in a higher power bill.
There are a few places in every home where leaks are likely to occur. One common area of a house where leaks occurs is the attic. Adding additional insulation to your attic will help keep temperatures more constant and your power bills will reflect this.
Then you will want to take a good look at the inside walls of your home. If you are like most people, there will be at least one ceiling light in each room and possibly a ceiling fan to go with it. Small cracks and holes often form around these fixtures and leave gaps between the fixtures and the ceiling. These are all spaces where cool or warm air can escape from the house and have an impact on your heating or cooling bills.
Around the wall switch plate of each room is another area inside the home where leaks can occur that are often overlooked. Check out the wall switch plate in each room. Make a note of the number of switch plates that are in the room. Most interior rooms will have at least one wall switch plate near the entrance so that the lights can be turned on or off when entering or leaving a room.
Also take a look at the electrical outlets, sometimes there is a wall switch plate next to, or near the outlet. There could be a small space between the switch plate and the wall where air is getting out and creating a change in your energy bill.
Although one wall switch plate might not seem like much at first, when you remember that each house could have up to 30 of them, spread through the interior you can see where all this wasted energy can add up fast. Thankfully, taking care of the problem is not difficult. Your local home improvement store will sell rubber gaskets that are designed to fit behind a wall switch plate to fill the gap in the wall and help keep the warm or cool air inside your house where it can do the most good.