How to Save Money On Your Water and Heating Bills This Winter
As promised, here are more tips from my time in the Weatherization Department. When I worked for my city, part of my job was to visit families struggling to keep up with their energy bills in the winter and educate them on how to "weatherize" their home. The tips on these hubs were collecting from my education materials from that time. Now, if you're wonderful at being frugal, you might roll your eyes that I would even suggest these things, but you'd be surprised at how many people I saw that didn't even think of these small details! I hope you find some useful information on saving money on your heating and water bill here!
1. FIX LEAKY FAUCETS!!!
Sorry about the title all in caps...I know, that is really rude, but I'm making a point! When I worked in the housing department at my former job, there were few things that drove me crazier during inspection time than a leaky faucet. I can't tell you how many times I've lectured residents on the importance of conserving water and how much money that could save them.
It is just common sense, but sometimes we get busy, forgetful, or lazy, and we need that extra push to go ahead and fix the leak. So, here's your push! Fix the leaky faucet or pipe immediately-- A slow, steady drip can waste gallons of water per month, and can drive up your water heating bill as well.
2. Take short showers instead of baths.
It is with a heavy heart that I write this, but sadly, I must. I am a hot water lover. Maybe I was Japanese in a past life, but I have always loved sinking into a steaming hot bath or hot tub. There is nothing quite like it. I've also always enjoyed a long, hot shower. When I was a teenager, my parents devised a system to cure me of my vice. If I kept my showers under five minutes all week, they let me stay out with my friends for an hour past curfew that weekend. Their little plan worked, and I started timing myself so I wouldn't go past five minutes. If your kids also take absurdly long showers, you might want to consider giving them some sort of reward to encourage them to waste less water.
The average person uses about half as much hot water in a shower as they do in the bath tub. I know that hot baths are relaxing and wonderful, but it really can be an expensive habit. If you're doing it for cleanliness, a shower is your best bet. If you're doing it for fun, consider jumping in the jacuzzi at the gym or cutting it back to once or twice a month. Encourage your family members to take showers as well.
3. Turn off running water...
How to not let your faucet run:
-Turn off running water in the shower while you shave and soap up.
-Don't let it run while you brush your teeth, and instead of slurping running water from the faucet to rinse toothpaste out of your mouth, fill a little cup and shut off the faucet.
-When you're doing your dishes, fill the larget pot, bowl, or a dishpan with rinse water instead of letting the faucet run while you hand scrub every dish.
4. Use cold water whenever you can.
Using cold water whenever possible will save you a lot of energy. Set the washing machine on "Cold", and run the faucet cold when you're operating your garbage disposal. Not only does this conserve energy, but it solidifies the grease, allowing it to be ground up and flushed away much more efficiently.
More ways to save energy:
- 8 Ways to Save Money With Your Refrigerator
Simple ways to amp up the savings by improving the efficiency of your refrigerator and freezer.
- Save Money and Lower Your Electric Bill While Doing Laundry
How to save money and energy while doing your washing, drying, and ironing.
- 5 Tips: How to Save Money on Your Heating Bill During Cold Winter Months
Useful tips from my time weatherizing houses on how to conserve energy and save money in your home during the winter months.