As a homeowner one of the biggest annoyances is receiving your hydro bill in the mail at the end of each month. As a resident of Ontario the cost of hydro keeps rising while the cost of our wages stays relatively stagnant. I am certain that this is the same for many other Canadian provinces and is even worse for some of our friends south of the border in many places through the United States. Although we can only hope for things such as hydro, water, and everyday services to become more affordable, the likelihood of this is slim.
As a new homeowner, I have been searching for simple ways to save money on services that we rely on every day. In this article I outline three simple ways to lower your monthly hydro bill, that most people never really consider. As silly as these tips may sound, they WORK!
Turn Off Your Bathroom Fan
Fans and blower motors are power hogs and undenounced to most people they are super inefficient and chew through energy like crazy. If your bathroom has not been renovated in the past few years, you likely do not have an energy efficient vent/fan. Newer bathroom fans will come with energy efficient brushless motors as well built in timers. Brushless motors in these fans have less resistance and therefore are more efficient. On top of the cost savings, these new fans are also whisper quiet. Upgrading your bathroom fan is simple and will cost between $60 and $150.
Upgrading to LED Lights
One of the easiest ways of saving on your monthly hydro bill is to upgrade your lighting to LED light bulbs (diodes). Everyone thinks that they need to change off of the lights in their house to LED to reap the cost saving benefits, but this is not true. The best way to start is by upgrading to LED lights in rooms or hallways that you frequent the most. Good places to start include:
- Main hallways
- Family Room; and
- Play Room
Further to the above, you can also consider LED lights for the exterior of your house. Most homes will have exterior lighting on for at least a few hours every night. The cost of running these lights will most definitely add up over time. Upgrading to LED soffit lights, porch lights, and landscaping lights is a MUST.
One of the biggest turnoffs for upgrading to LED lights is the initial investment cost. LED lights can be 2-3 times more expensive than a standard light bulb. The key is to only buy LEDs on sale. Once or twice per year most major retailers such as Home Depot, Canadian Tire, and even Amazon will have LED Light Sales. During these events you can purchase LED light bulbs for $0.50 each!
If you can purchase LED bulbs on sale, they can be paid for within only one year of use.
Save on Water
Finding ways to lower your water consumption is difficult because we heavily rely on this resource for things such as showers, cooking, and maintaining our landscapes. No one wants to go hungry or be dirty, so let focus on conserving water outdoors. Just like many power companies that are offering rebates to conserve energy, many water utilities are also offering rebates to conserve too. In Ontario I was able to purchase a rain barrel for less than 30$. This was one of my best purchases. Within no time the barrel was full of rain water and I had 55 gallons of free water that I was able to use for my vegetable garden and irrigation of my property. To take it one step further, I purchased a small bilge pump that was powered by a 20$ solar controller. The pump was able to transfer water from my rain barrel to a small in-ground sprinkler system that waters my yard during sever dry spells in the summer months.
Other ways to save on water include:
- Limiting your washing cycle time;
- Stop washing your car every week;
- Increase the temperature in your dishwasher, but reduce the wash cycle time
- Cut back on shower times. Wash and get out!
For men, while shaving fill up a cup with water and rinse your razer in there; don’t continuously run the tap.
Although basic, if you follow the above steps you will be sure to save money. Even if you save $10 per month, that is $120 per year; enough to treat yourself to a spa day or some new tools for the workshop. if you liked this article please feel free to share it, and if you have any questions, let us know by commenting in the section below and we will be sure to help you out!