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Old 04-09-2015, 09:21 PM
 
506 posts, read 414,006 times
Reputation: 1365

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Yes!

Almost 1000 dollars savings in utilities! And this with changes on trivial things in our patterns!

Here is the evolution graph:



Please be noted, that I only moved to my wife's house around October (We have been married almost 2 years but we had to endure a long process with Embassies and so on since I am not American) and started implementing a few changes.

First, I started off by changing the light bulbs around the house with CFLs and LEDs. She had incandescents in the house, which I was able to count a total output of around 1300 W with all the lights on.

We changed it all, and now the TOTAL OUTPUT is around 200 Watts for the lighting around the house.

This was the major change in electricity and also the heat, even though the furnace is Natural Gas, the reduction in heat led to less consumption of the blower.

As of now, we are using about 300 kWh per month, and this is during heating season which means, 50 kWh is exclusive to the blower and also our super old Fridge, which I believe is a Whirlpool Limited Edition with a serial number from either 1977 or 1987. Its usage is around 2.3 kWh a day, or around 70 kWh a month!

We are going to buy a new one to go with the kitchen renovation, this will lead to a decrease of around 30-35 kWh in usage with the new fridge at least.

The cooling season is coming but there I hope to see some changes too, even though we live in a very humid area in the summer.

All in all, since November the changes led to 100 USD savings in electricity and 332 USD savings on heat alone!

On heat, I bought a Nest, where we didn't have a programmable thermostat before. By programming it to a large setback for a long time (during our sleep ours and work hours) we were able to reduce bills by almost 50% !! and this is with a colder winter to go along and with gas being about 10% more expensive than last year as well!!

Another factor that led to a decrease in gas was we started to wash our clothes more with cold water. I would say 90% of the time you don't need warm water, or even hot water, only when there are tough stains.

I expect on a 12 month basis, the savings on heat to reach about 450 USD on Natural Gas.

Now to electricity. We have already saved 100 USD since November, and since heating season is basically over, I expect to see a drop of around 50 kWh from the furnace blower for the next couple months (operation hours of 90 hours during February and January). Of course we might need to use Air Conditioning during the cooling season too. But hold on there for a little bit.

With the programmable thermostat we probably won't need to cool during most part of the day, since we are OUT ... during the day is when heat is more intense, so at the most we'd need AC once we get home to make the house cooler and probably during sleep. This is WITHOUT changing our patterns. But at night on the other hand, is when temperatures are cooler as well!! so we probably wont even need much AC to sleep well maybe just a fan!

I expect of couse, to change the patterns, such as using fans instead of AC and so on.

But wait (there's more!) ... with just a phone call after visiting the PowerSwitch website, I switched from my current supplier to another, and our kWh rate was reduced from 9.55 cents to 7.29 cents !!

This is a reduction of 25% !!! on price alone!! ... it means that even if I dont change a rats ass on our patterns and keep hogging huge amounts of energy ... we still see a savings of AT LEAST 250 USD so the minimum we can expect is 450 USD from natural gas and 250 USD on electricity = 700 USD !! savings!

With a change in electricity patterns, mostly about AC and switching to fans whenever possible and also the use of the programmable function of the thermostat, we may achieve 560 USD per year on electricity ALONE! (with a change in patters allied with the price reduction).

1000 dollars per year is about 20k+ compounded after 10 years!

Note: I forgot to mention that we have reduced the usage of our dryer as well, using it mainly for things that imperatively need to be super wrinkle free such as suits shirts. Everything else usually comes out of the washer almost wrinkle free and the sun takes care of it as well when hung on the line.
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Old 04-09-2015, 11:19 PM
 
Location: Boston Suburb
2,024 posts, read 4,994,412 times
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Thanks for sharing your success story.

7.29c per kWh is so cheap in comparison to the rate in my area. I also recently switched to another elect supplier and now I'm saving about 3c per kWh. This makes it hurt a little less after a 50% elec rate increase here in the NE region back in Jan. It's a no brainer to make the switch and reap the benefit without doing anything differently. I told this to my neighbors when we had a get-together but there was little enthusiasm - hmm... are people too rich to save a few bucks every month nowadays?
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Old 04-10-2015, 12:39 AM
 
506 posts, read 414,006 times
Reputation: 1365
Quote:
Originally Posted by mmyk72 View Post
Thanks for sharing your success story.

7.29c per kWh is so cheap in comparison to the rate in my area. I also recently switched to another elect supplier and now I'm saving about 3c per kWh. This makes it hurt a little less after a 50% elec rate increase here in the NE region back in Jan. It's a no brainer to make the switch and reap the benefit without doing anything differently. I told this to my neighbors when we had a get-together but there was little enthusiasm - hmm... are people too rich to save a few bucks every month nowadays?
Yeah its so easy...

People around here say "Ohh it's a scam! People were scammed last year when they were charged 2-3 xs the normal rate..."

Welll ...duhh!! If you are in a variable market rate that's what happens! Most the time you are paying much much less and sometimes when there is lot of demand you can pay more but in the long run it pays off! And if people were so caught up to not pay attention to the end of their fixed contracts.... its their fault!

Anyhow, with that episode, my state - PA - made it mandatory to all suppliers if I ask to switch plans or even companies! the switch HAS to be made in less than 3 business days!

This is great, because I can go variable rate now and pay even cheaper, and if prices increase too much, I can just switch back to fixed rates and this will be effective in less than 3 days!

Before people would be stuck for up to 2 months switching suppliers!

But anyhow, I am on a fixed plan though where my rate is locked for 12 months!

I kinda regret not going for an offer a couple months ago which the kWh was a little more expensive - like 20% during peak hours but then from 6PM to 11PM the energy was FREEE !!!

I tried to look up that plan again but it wasn't up for grabs anymore.

But I agree it seems people are swimming in coins! Most of it I believe is due to just pure inaction! People don't give a damn even though there can be lots of savings to be had!

I will gladly take those guaranteed 250 dollars of savings in a year, probably more if we consider our pattern change!
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Old 04-10-2015, 06:26 AM
 
Location: southwestern PA
20,426 posts, read 35,696,560 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmyk72 View Post

7.29c per kWh is so cheap in comparison to the rate in my area.
Really?
And I thought my 5.84 cents was high (western PA).
Guess I will be more grateful now!

Great job, OP, with cutting consumption and expenses.
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Old 04-10-2015, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 6,916,930 times
Reputation: 13779
Exterior awnings, room darkening blinds, and ceiling fans can really help cut A/C usage. I have all three but I also have central air, which I haven't used in two years. A whole house fan is also a good investment to cut A/C costs, although I don't have one myself.

During really hot, humid periods, it's actually better to keep your windows closed and blinds drawn with the ceiling fans going during the day and then opening the windows in the evening when it's cooler. You at least keep some of the really hot air out.
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Old 04-10-2015, 06:48 AM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,002 posts, read 16,118,243 times
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My Electric Bill is down some I had two new AC compresses installed in 2013 & 14.
My Gas Bill is up some, Colder Winter I think, Plus my Son finished HS, and his home during the day in 2014, so heating more during Day.
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Old 04-10-2015, 08:33 AM
 
506 posts, read 414,006 times
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We'll see how this summer goes and then we'll evaluate regarding new insulation or not and the need for a whole house fan

5 cents per kwh is really good doors that count distribution charges? If it does that thing is amazingly cheap... I'm in central PA....
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Old 04-10-2015, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Chicago
3,018 posts, read 5,089,306 times
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Yikes! I pay around 14.5 cents per kw/h in Chicago for supply and delivery. I just googled the average and in Chicago its 17.2 cents. I had to sign a 3 year contract to get my "cheap" rate.
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Old 04-10-2015, 09:37 AM
 
Location: southwestern PA
20,426 posts, read 35,696,560 times
Reputation: 38829
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusitano_ View Post

5 cents per kwh is really good doors that count distribution charges? If it does that thing is amazingly cheap... I'm in central PA....
It is the "Price to Compare" in bold print on the statement.
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Old 04-10-2015, 09:52 AM
 
2,303 posts, read 2,121,792 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusitano_ View Post
Yeah its so easy...

People around here say "Ohh it's a scam! People were scammed last year when they were charged 2-3 xs the normal rate..."
I find it amusing that at first you blame people as if they don't understand the concept of a variable rate, yet then go on about how good it is that because of the scam (and yes, it was a scam and many of those companies were sued by the state and forced to close) you now have new protections.

Don't act like it's the ignorance of the consumers when this was actually a problem with the businesses.

FYI, it wasn't 3x the normal rate, it was 3x the rates being offered by the normal electric companies at that exact same time. If the protections you've got now were in place, people using those suppliers who were ripping people could have gotten out when they announced the rate increase.

Instead, the suppliers jacked up the price to 3x the current rate from the normal electric company and did nothing as people were stuck for 60 days.

Last edited by Jeo123; 04-10-2015 at 10:23 AM..
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