There are a number of ways to save money on utilities that you may not have thought of.  When it comes down to the essentials, you can’t get much more essential than heat, water and light.  But while your utilities may be absolutely essential, the amount you pay on your utility bills is not.

Below are six tips that will help you save money on utilities

Air leaks and Insulation

If warmed air in winter or cooled air in summer is leaking out of your windows and your doors, you are throwing money away. Renovations, many of which can be do-it-yourself, will pay off much more quickly than you think.  If you have more house than you are using, make sure vents in unused areas are closed. In addition, the laundry room door should be open in winter and closed in summer.  Doing both of these things will help save money on utilities.

Mom Was Right – Turn Off The Lights

Make sure the lights in your home are only on where you and your family members are. The lights should follow you around, they shouldn’t be on for hours in an empty room, waiting for your return.  Your mom was right about that one.

Try Out LED Or Fluorescent Light Bulbs

The relatively new LED light bulbs are expensive, but you will make that up in their remarkably long lifespan. They use only a fraction of the energy that incandescent bulbs use while providing a light quality that many believe is comparable to incandescent. It’s an investment, but you can make the conversion slowly over time.

Keep Your Air Conditioner Maintained

Air conditioners don’t last forever and are a major expense in themselves. So extending their life with regular maintenance will help you save money on utilities. Using a programmable thermostat is also important, since that will allow you to maintain the temperature you desire.

Save On Water Usage

Nearly four gallons of water goes down the drain each minute that a faucet is on. Furthermore, if you use a dishwasher, try turning off the dry cycle to save on electricity, and don’t thaw food by running hot water over it. You can use the “defrost” setting on the microwave instead.

In many areas, the electric company will charge less for electricity usage during off-peak hours. Find out what time that is for your electric company, and then make sure to run your dishwasher during that period.  If you use a lot of water in your yard, consider getting an irrigation meter. This costs a few hundred dollars, but it allows the utility company to subtract the water for outdoor use from your sewage water bill.

Some Tips For Oven Usage

If you are cooking for one, using your toaster oven will save a great deal of energy. In addition, preheating your oven is not really needed if you are cooking something for upwards of an hour.

Save Money On Utilities

Benjamin Franklin was right, a penny saved is a penny earned.  Keeping your fixed costs as low as possible will free up money so you can put it towards other financial goals.