Sense & Semblance
Tips to Reduce Your Electricity Bill
In this day and age where electricity plays a big part in our everyday lives, it is inevitable that sometimes we spend more than we would like to on our electricity bills. And… it definitely doesn’t help that Singapore is such a sunny and humid place, making the temptation to switch the air-con on extremely hard to beat.
Electricity prices have been rising over the years and are expected to continue so in the future. So… is there absolutely nothing that we can do to keep these costs down? Of course not! In this article, we have identified some hidden culprits behind your high household power usage, as well as some reminders on how to lower your usage rate.
Tip #1: Switch to energy-efficient appliances
When it comes to household appliances, many of us may be tempted to go for the cheapest options in a bid to save some money. However, is that really the most cost-saving choice? Probably not. Besides paying attention to its initial purchase price, it is also important to take note of its energy-consumption rate.
Check the labels before purchasing any appliances and opt for those with 4- or 5-tick energy efficient ratings. Although they might cost more upfront, you will end up saving more electricity and money over the years, which is especially true in view of the ever-rising electricity prices.
Remember, the higher number of ticks, the more energy-efficient the appliance is! This also means lower electricity consumption as compared to using one with fewer ticks.
Tip #2: Convert to LED lights
Yes, while it is true that incandescent bulbs look great with its amazing ability to render colour, they have the worse energy efficiency and lifespan on the market.
On the other hand, LED bulbs generally use the least amount of electricity compared to other commercially available bulbs. Not only that, LEDs have an extremely long lifespan, allowing you to enjoy long-term cost savings and lower bills.
Sounds like what you’re looking for? Then, you’ll be even happier to know that LEDs produces very high light quality and are extremely hassle-free, making them the preferred choice for many!
Tip #3: Maintain your air conditioner temperature at 25 degrees Celsius
Living in a tropical climate where the temperature averages 31-33ºC during the day, the air-con has become an indispensable appliance for many of us. The act of turning on the air-con to full blast the moment we reach home is such a guilty pleasure. But do you know that actually consumes a ton of electricity?
Next time, instead of lowering the air-con temperature to its lowest, set it at 25ºC instead. And if you prefer your room to be cooled down quicker, try using a fan concurrently for the next few minutes. This will help to evenly distribute the cold air produced by your air-con across the entire room!
Tip #4: Wash your laundry in cold water
When you do your laundry with hot water, 90% of the energy consumed by the washing machine actually goes towards heating the water and not actually washing your clothes. What this means is that if you wash with cold water instead, you can potentially save up to 90% on your washing machine’s electricity consumption!
Not only that, washing in cold water can also help maintain fabric colour and prevent shrinking. With all these benefits in mind, you might be thinking to yourself, “Does that mean that I will never use hot water for my laundry?”. Of course not, hot water is still recommended for certain loads of laundry, such as heavily soiled clothing or for sanitizing purposes.
Other than that, doing your daily laundry with cold water is a great and sustainable choice for both the planet and your wallet.
Tip #5: Switch off all your electronics and lights when not in use
A common misconception is that home appliances stop consuming energy once you switch them off. Well, that’s technically only half correct. Many electronic appliances such as televisions, routers, and computers continue to use energy even after you turn them off. The only way to ensure zero electricity wastage when these appliances are not in use, is to switch off the power source where they are connected to.
This may sound like an insignificant act, after all, how much money can I save by doing this? You would be surprised to find out that these “wasted electricity” can actually account for up to 10% of our electricity bill!
Tip #6: Practice good refrigerator habits
Our refrigerator is one of the most hardworking appliances in our homes that works round-the-clock. Hence, it only makes sense that we put in effort to keep it energy efficient.
One important step that many of us often neglect is checking the refrigerator’s door seals regularly. If you notice any cracks or splits, have them replaced as soon as possible. This is because any break in this barrier will allow warm air to enter the refrigerator, making it work even harder to maintain the pre-set temperature and subsequently, consume more electricity.
While you are at it, also check if the seals are worn or loose. You can easily test this by closing a dollar note between the door seal and the door along the entire door edge. And if the dollar note shifts easily, it means that the seals are not tight enough and you should consider replacing them.
Believe me, these tips are generally easy to implement and do not require a big lifestyle change. Incorporate these habits into your daily lives and see the difference for yourself when you receive your electricity bill the following month!