On March 2nd, Pacific Power announced it wanted to increase rates for homeowners across Oregon. This rate increase would create $82.2 million in profit for the company. In Iowa, the IUB gave Alliant the go ahead to increase rates by 13% during their last rate increase request.
Are you sick of watching your hard earned cash disappear to rate hikes?
Homeowners are often hit hardest by the rate increase, seeing their rates increase 5-8% more than commercial rate increases. We don’t think it’s fair for homeowners to bear the brunt of inflation and greedy power companies.
But is there anything you can do? After all, we all need electricity at home.
There is! Keep reading to learn easy changes you can make at home to help avoid inflated electric bills. From simple fixes to investing in solar, Purelight Power wants you to own your power and save.
How We’re Powering Our Homes
With winding rivers across the states, it’s no surprise that Oregon and Montana both produce roughly half of their electricity from hydroelectric power.
But what might surprise you is that the other half is still generated through dirty methods. This includes natural gas electric plants throughout Oregon, and power plants in Montana where it’s produced by burning coal.
While Iowa is transitioning away from coal power plants and using the natural prairie winds to generate half the electricity in the Hawkeye state, the other half still comes mainly from coal and natural gas sources.
That’s important to know if you’re looking for cleaner energy at home, and to understand how rising costs for natural gas might cause your electric bill to spike. The good news is that you’re not stuck paying for rate hikes to pad the pockets of CEOs and wealthy investors.
Currently in Oregon, Iowa, and Montana, net metering is guaranteed by law, and homeowners who install home solar can see the value of their home increase by 4%.
With the solar investment tax credit available to help across the U.S. homeowners recoup 30% of their installation costs through the end of this year, going solar can save homeowners tens of thousands of dollars!
If you’re not yet ready to go solar, we still have some tips on how to save on energy at home.
Lurking Energy Guzzlers at Home
Be Suspicious of Your Appliances
Your TV, coffeemaker, chargers for phones and tablets, and other electronics in your home are still sucking power even when you think they’re turned off.
That sneaky use of electricity is called vampire power or a phantom load, and adds up quickly.
The fix to keep home appliances from sucking your bank account dry is simple: unplug them when you’re not using them. Make life even easier by keeping appliances and devices stored near each other and plugged into surge protectors you can turn off with a simple flick.
Do Dishes Less and Keep More Snacks on Hand
There may be someone out there who loves doing the dishes. But if for you it’s a dreaded chore, you’ll be happy about our next tip.
Save energy by only running your dishwasher when it’s actually full. Only doing the dishes when you have a full dishwasher, rather than when you only have it half-full or even three-quarters full, helps cut down on wasting electricity and water on more frequent washing with fewer dishes.
Similarly, keeping your favorite snacks on hand can save you money in a roundabout way as well.
When your freezer and fridge are fuller it means that they won’t have to work as hard or waste energy cooling an empty space. The items in your fridge and freezer also help to insulate the space and regulate temperature.
Although the savings might equal out if it comes down to buying more delicious snacks to keep your fridge full…
Stay Cozy and Cool the Old Fashioned Way
Heating and cooling are generally the most expensive part of anyone’s power bill at home. Thankfully, there are some time-honored methods for being thrifty while staying warm or cool.
Lowering your thermostat a tiny bit during colder temperatures can make a noticeable difference in your heating costs. Likewise, turning down the A/C just a little will save on cooling costs in the summer.
Don’t worry, we’re not saying you’re stuck shivering or sweating year round. In the winter, simply pop on a cozy sweater, or curl up under a blanket, or do both by donning a wearable blanket.
When the weather warms and your sweaters are shoved back in your closet, turning on a fan to help circulate the cold air your A/C puts out helps cool your home more efficiently. For an added breath of cool, fresh air, do what our grandparents did.
Open the windows in the evening to take advantage of cooler air as the sunsets, and close your windows and curtains in the morning to keep the sun from turning your home into an oven.
High Efficiency Means High Savings
A fairly low-cost option for more savings is to switch out old filament type light bulbs for LEDs.
Up front they may cost more than traditional light bulbs, but LED bulbs can save homeowners more than $16 a month. Those savings should make up for any cost of investing in energy saving bulbs.
If you’re really looking for a trade-up that will save tons, updating appliances like your washer and dryer for high efficiency models can save you hundreds of dollars a year!
Homeowners who still use a mix of natural gas and electric appliances in their homes might also want to consider going all electric to save money and have a safer home.
Surprising Savings with Solar
If you’re wanting a long-term investment that helps you avoid future rate hikes from greedy power companies, solar is the way to go.
Home solar used to be out of reach for most homeowners. But with Purelight Power’s $0 down program, you can have clean, renewable, affordable energy at home and save!
Wipe out your power bill, and see savings of more than $1,000 every year, and upwards of $20,000 over the lifetime of a solar energy system. Find out if your roof qualifies for our zero down, nothing out of pocket program today.