Tips to save money on your energy bill
Everyone wants to save some money on electricity. Power getting more and more expensive, and our life habits becoming more costly, keeping a better control of your electricity consumption is essential for our economy. Let us not forget: we live in a country with one of the highest electricity rates in Europe.
Starting with the basics would be knowing how much power is included in our contract and whether or not it suits our everyday use. If your consumption is much lower than your contract states, that means you are paying much more than needed every month. Check your electricity bill for “datos del contrato” (contract details) to find out.
Once you learn how how much power you are paying for, you should know if it’s more than you actually need. You can calculate the total consumption for your kitchen and electrical appliances and compare it to the power that appears on your contract. Another, more unorthodox way would be plugging and turning on all your appliances at once, and see what happens. If the power does not go off, it is obvious you are paying for more than you need.
The following table will give you some details about the average power for most appliances. In order to learn more about yours specifically, you will have to check their instruction manuals.
If you made this calculations and it turns out you are paying for more power than you would actually need every month, you can call your electricity company in order to get a technician who will fix this for you. Just keep in mind that, if you lower the power contract too much and you use too many appliances at once, the power will go off. Also, in case you would need to modify this contract again, you will have to wait for one year at least, as this is the allowed standard for most power companies.
Besides, you can use some tips that will help you lower your electricity bill, starting with paying attention to the places where more power is used:
As you know, many electrical appliances and devices consume energy even when they seemed to be turned off. In other words, the tiny red light that is still on when you turn off your TV or washing machine indicate there is energy being drawn.
Perhaps you’re thinking that we exaggerate, that this is ridiculous, but if you consider the standby power for all electrical appliances for a year, it turns out it’s over 10% of the total energy consumption. This means for a total 1000 € bill a year, standby power was 100 €.
How can we fix this? By connecting kitchen appliances and other devices to socket strips with a switch that allows us to turn them off completely.
Saving power in the kitchen
As you know, electricity rates are not the same throughout the day. Find out what the cheapest and the most expensive times are and you will save a few more euros on your bill.
Use the cheapest time frame for the appliances with a highest power consumption. Also, if you avoid using them at the same time, you can manage to lower the contract and save money every month. It’s all a matter of being organised.
First and foremost we should apply common sense:
When using your washing machine, make sure to load it as much as possible to make the most of the washing. It’s also cheaper if you use cold water, as warming the water up takes energy as well.
If you are about to take something from the fridge, make sure you know exactly what: if you open the door and start taking a look and figuring out, temperature inside raises and requires more power to come back to normal. And if you do the same with the freezer, well, you get the idea.
When cooking with the halogen hob or the oven, you can turn them off if the food will be ready soon, as the heat will remain for a while and will be enough to finish. While it is not a lot, it will help you save some money every year.
Saving power in the living room
A different kind of lighting for each use is key. It’s not a problem to have many lamps if used correctly. You don’t need the same lighting when watching a movie, reading a book, or having dinner. Some things require more power, some require less. Hence it is necessary to have different lamps for different activities at home. And then, of course, don’t forget to turn off the ones you are not using.
Switch to LED. This will lower consumption considerably. For instance, LED bulbs draw up to 86% less energy than halogen bulbs.
Saving power in the bedrooms
When in your bedroom, it is often not necessary to use the main lamp. You should always try to take advantage of natural light to begin with, and use low-consumption bedside table lamps for reading. If you charge your phone battery at night, the electricity rate is also lower.
It is still believed that if we turn off the lights, kitchen appliances and other electrical devices in order to save power, they will draw more energy when being turned on again than if we leave them on. We can assure you this is simply not true. If we use LEDs and your kitchen appliances were not inherited from your grandmother, consumption will not be higher.
As we said, it is all a matter of being organised and getting used to it. If you keep these tips in mind you will manage to save energy and use the money for more interesting stuff, perhaps having dinner at that restaurant you have been wanting to try for some time?
Just a thought: when you’re leaving home for that dinner, do not forget to turn off the lights! 😉