There is nothing worse than getting a utility bill that's higher than expected. You begin to wonder how and why it got that high or what you might have done that caused such a big increase. At the end of the day your scavenging through your accounts trying to find the funds because the amount you had saved isn't nearly enough - we've all been there.
Thanks to COVID-19 all of us are spending more time at home, using more energy, power and water, which means higher utility bills (barf). It's not enough that COVID-19 has taken away school, sports, ceremonies & events among other things but it had to increase our bills too?!?
Thankfully, the Crown Utilities and City of Regina are doing what they can to help!
No interest & late payment charges are great BUT at the end of the day we'll still have those bills to pay. So, what can we do to save on those monthly utilities? Well, often times it's small actions that can lead to big savings! Here are some tricks we've found on lowering those energy, power and water bills, and having more funds leftover for savings.
Energy & Power
So much in our households rely on heat and electricity, it's hard to imagine what people did when there was none! There are different areas in every home where we can limit our use of power and energy, you'd be surprised at some of the little things you can do to save big.
Refrain from turning on lights when able to use sunlight.
Turn off all lights when leaving a room or your home.
Replace your lightbulbs with LED or CFS bulbs - they use less energy, are brighter, and last longer! Although more expensive initially, they will save you more money in the long run.
Only use when there is a full load (dishwashers will use the same amount of water no matter how full it is - the less you run it the more energy & water you save).
Let dishes dry naturally rather than using the heated drying setting.
Skip the pre-rinse to save on both power & water!
Washing Machine & Dryer
Only use when there is a full load of laundry to save on both water & power. If you don't have an energy efficient machine, your washer will fill with the same amount of water no matter how large the load.
Dryer balls = less drying time & money saved on dryer sheets. They can also replace fabric softener and are better for the environment!
Wash in cold water. Your machine uses 85-90% of its energy heating the water!
Air dry clothes rather than using your dryer.
Clean the dryer lint after each load to decrease dry time and use less power.
Ensure filters are clean and things are running properly (regular maintenance).
Use small kitchen appliances such as a toaster, crock pot, microwave, etc. rather than your stove.
Fridges and freezers work more efficiently when full, try filling a repurposed milk carton/jug with water or juice and place it in the fridge/freezer to take up space and increase efficiency.
Open the fridge as little as possible and don't let children browse with the doors open. Having your children's snacks at the front of the fridge might help with this!
Keep your kitchen appliances clean (ex. filters) so they run more efficiently.
Avoid opening the oven when cooking. You can lose up to 20% of heat each time it's opened!
Unplugging all non-essential items and charging/plugging them in overnight will save huge on your power bill!
Use a power bar for non-essential items like lamps, sound bar, tv, electronics, etc. that way you only have one thing to unplug (when not in use).
Turning your water heater down to 120 degrees or lower will save on energy costs.
For every degree you lower at night you can save 2% on heating costs!
Open windows at night or use fans to cool house rather than the AC.
Drafts are BIG power wasters, to prevent leaks try sealing drafts with weather stripping, caulking or sealant. This can save up to 10% on yearly costs!
Changing or cleaning air filters every 2 months will increase efficiency. Dirty or clogged filters force longer run time to heat or cool home. This is especially important if you have pets.
Keep your house/apartment at a consistent temperature (not too high or low) so it's not constantly working to heat or cool your home.
If you have drafty windows, putting plastic over them will keep heat in the house.
Keep your air vents clear of rugs and furniture so the airflow is not restricted and having to work harder.
So we've followed all the tips and tricks to save on Energy & Power but all that savings is going straight toward our water bill! Here are some ways to conserve water so that your savings can be used for something other than utility bills.
Fixing leaky faucets will save a ton on water bill costs, this includes checking your toilet for leaks too.
Reduce shower times, or bathe multiple household members together.
Showers use less water than baths, if bathing try not filling the tub so full to decrease water consumption & cost.
Use a rain barrel for any extra water usage.
Turn water off in between washing your face, brushing teeth, shaving, etc..
Wash fruits and vegetables in a partially filled sink rather than running water.
Using a jug of cold water to place in the fridge rather than waiting for the tap to get cold will reduce your water usage.
We hope these tips will help you save on your monthly utility bills! If you have any other suggestions please share! Or if you have any ideas for other tips & tricks topics - let us know. We are open to all and any ideas. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us through our Social Media accounts (below). 😊💙
Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected
~ CFS Regina
For regular updates regarding our programs & services please follow our social media accounts.