“Why is my energy bill more expensive compared to last month?”
“I went on vacation and my bill was more expensive than normal, what?!”
“Why does the cost of energy vary from day to day?”
If you’ve found yourself asking these questions or have other concerns about your energy usage, we’re glad you’re here. We’re going to talk about how to save energy through these constantly-changing temperatures.
This month vs. last month
It’s pretty crazy how you can be doing the same tasks day by day, but your energy bill fluctuates so much. If you thought you did a good job in January of saving energy and just received your bill for February and were shocked, let me tell you why. Some factors can include staying up-to-date on changing your air filters, unplugging unused electronics during the day, and using less hot water.
If you work 40 hours per week, make sure everything is turned off during the day except your HVAC system. Instead of turning your heat off during the day, turn it three degrees cooler. Doing this allows your system to work easier and regimented instead of starting and stopping over and over again (this means less energy exertion!).
Fun Fact: an empty home raises your energy bill even higher than you being home. This is because when you’re hanging out watching television, the room has more mass, less empty space to circulate heat. Next time you go on vacation, just remember your bill may look unusual. The key is to not turn your HVAC systems completely off. If you do, it will take twice the amount of energy use to get back up to the proper temperature.
Yesterday’s kWh versus today
What even is a kWh? A kWh stands for kilowatt-hour which represents your daily energy use. On average, households use 30 kWh. If your kWh is higher than 30, that’s why your bill is pricey. kWh varies depending on many factors: especially weather. If a cold front comes through your town, your kWh is going to rise. The colder it is outside, the harder your HVAC systems have to work.
Unfortunately, much of this is out of your control. If you want to fix this as much as possible, triple check your insulation. If your windows and doors are not properly insulated, your system is working twice as hard and raising your bill twice as much. Also, keep your blinds open to let the natural sunlight warm your space throughout the day and close them when the sun goes down.
So, what can we do to save energy? Unplug, turn the thermostat down (not off), insulate, and lower hot water usage.