Perhaps, one of the biggest slice of a household budget goes to paying bills, particularly that of water and electricity. Being in a country with a tropical climate, Filipinos’ consumption of water and electricity are often affected by sudden weather changes.
Many have endured the burden of utility skyrocketing bills, often because of neglect and unmindful consumption. However, there are tried-and-tested ways on how you can trim utility bills at home. You will be amazed at how these hacks and tips can save you from a monthly bill shock.
Opt for LED light bulbs
If you are still using incandescent or fluorescent light bulbs to illuminate your house, then you are missing on a great way to cut your energy consumption. Did you know that incandescent lights not particularly energy efficient and long-lasting? In fact, LED lights can last up to 10 times longer and four times more energy efficient than average incandescent bulbs. Additionally, LED lights do not produce heat the way normal light bulbs do.
Check all your appliances regularly
It is always a must to do regular checks on your electrical devices and appliances to make sure they are working properly. Some critical appliances that need to be inspected are refrigerators, air-conditioning units, and electric stoves and ovens.
Another way to save energy is by making sure that you unplug all unused electrical and electronic devices. Most of these devices still suck up a small amount of electrical juice called a phantom charge when left plugged in.
According to Lamudi, it is also important to keep your appliances clean. For instance, electric fans with dirty grills and blades often exert more effort but run slower. A refrigerator’s performance can also be affected by how dusty its coils are. Make sure to also defrost your refrigerator once in a while.
And speaking of appliances, always check the Energy Efficiency Factor (EEF) when buying new units. This tells you an appliance’s power consumption and efficiency ratings. The higher the EER, the lower energy the appliance consumes.
During daytime, it is best to open all your windows to allow more light and more natural air in. Avoid switching on the lights and fans in the morning and let nature do its work.
You can also schedule your laundry on sunny days, as the sun can help you dry your clothes without having to use a spin dryer.
Use water wisely
Discipline is the number one rule when it comes to trimming water bills. The traditional Filipino tabo, timba, and palanggana will actually help you control your water usage when taking a bath, washing dishes, flushing your toilet, brushing your teeth, and doing laundry.
If you would like the convenience showers and built-in flushes provide, just make sure to go with water-efficient shower heads and dual flush system.
Regularly checking your pipes for leaks is also a must as cracked pipes can easily inflate your water consumption without you realizing it.
Also, a helpful tip is to always look for ways to save and reuse water for watering your plants.
Who knew that the color of your house can actually affect the temperature inside? Lamudi said it is better to paint your walls with light pastel colors to reduce heat absorption. This goes by the same idea of wearing light-colored shirts to keep you cool during hot days. By doing so, you can reduce your electric fan and air-con usage significantly.
Take a smarter approach to ironing
Ironing is one of the activities you do at home that consumes a significant amount of energy. In order to lower its electrical consumption, it is better to start ironing clothes that require low temperature. From there, work upwards and turn the heat up as you deal with thicker fabrics. During the last few minutes of ironing, switch off the device and use the remaining heat to press other lighter clothes.
Switch to induction cooking
While this one requires you to invest in induction cookers and pans, the long-term returns make this investment worth every centavo.
What makes induction cookers energy efficient is its ability to prevent excessive heat transfer in the atmosphere. Not only does it save energy, it is also a safer way to cook your food.
Fill your fridge
It is better to get smaller refrigerators that you can fill easily. The logic behind keeping your fridge full lies in keeping the coolness inside it intact. If you have more vacant space inside then it means more cold air will escape once you open the door.
However, be cautious in overloading your fridge with unnecessary items. The key here is to leave an ample space for the cold air to roam around inside the unit.
It’s all about discipline
A little discipline in your habits can already go a long way. Saving bills do not actually take a lot of work. The important thing is for you to be resourceful, practical, and mindful in using such resources for your everyday needs.