Wednesday, March 28

Common Sense Frugality: Use Less Electricity

In 2010 the average household spent $110.55 per month on electricity.  Alabama, where I live, claims the highest monthly bill in the lower 48 of $147.69, thanks in no small part to our oppressive summers.  But at the Frugal Miser homestead, the bill clocks in at an average $46 per month.

How do we keep our electric bill less than 1/3 the average for my state?

  • Most important, we let our bodies adapt to the temperature instead of rushing to turn on the A/C or the heat.  In the last six months I have turned on the thermostat fewer than 5 days.  In the winter, dress in layers, drink hot drinks and wear socks!  In the summer, drink water constantly.  Most people don't drink enough water anyway, but this is the best way I know to cool my body in the summer.  We also use ceiling fans to circulate the air, but only when the room is occupied.  It is a complete waste to run a ceiling fan in an empty room.
  • We unplug most things instead of just turning them off.  Energy vampires, which are those appliances such as the TV or your computer that continuously use a small amount of power when plugged in, account for a not insignificant up to 20% of your monthly power usage.

I've learned to leave the TV off when I'm not watching it.  Seems obvious, but before I might be sitting at the couch checking emails while the TV was on, completely oblivious to what was actually showing.  When I'm out mystery shopping, sometimes I'll bring my laptop with me and enter my reports at the library, using their electricity.  Once you make a habit out of being energy efficient, it takes almost no effort to save real dollars.  By choosing NOT to be the average household, I am saving about $1,200 per year on my electric bill alone.


  1. Thanks for sharing such nice ideas to save electricity. I'd like to add some suggestions for reducing your electricity usage and costs.
    1. Unplug when not in use
    2. Use a power strip
    3. Energy audit.
    4. Replace your bulbs
    5. Seal your leaks
    6. Wash clothes smartly
    7. Dry your clothes the right way
    8. Load your dishwasher
    To follow above technique you can easily save electricity without any cost and much effort.
    For more tips :

  2. Get a KillOWatt (or version thereof) and you will be surprised, maybe shocked, by how much power your devices use.