As summer approaches, memories of a skyrocketing power bill begin to creep back into our minds. We may have temporarily forgotten the pain we felt every time the electric bill was opened, but it’s all becoming clear again.

If you live in Arizona, you may as well submit yourself to six hundred dollar electric bills during the summer. For everybody else, there are steps you can take to reducing your power bill. Many of these steps are simple, yet can make drastic changes in your everyday life.

Keeping your equipment running

No matter what the appliance is, it is important to keep it maintained so that it will run for years to come if it needs to. Everybody should get an annual HVAC inspection. This is a great way for you to check and make sure that your air-conditioning system is running as efficiently as possible. They can find any leaky ducts, which can reduce energy efficiency by almost a fourth.

To keep your air conditioner running smooth and effectively, the filter must be cleaned out as often as possible, preferably every month. This will make the air quality in your home significantly better, and help to reduce the power bill as well. Proper maintenance of all power guzzling equipment will reduce the bills and make them last longer.

Even with the most diligent maintenance, sometimes the old appliances have to be replaced with the new. Technology is moving toward better performing appliances. Even the best-maintained older appliances cannot match some of these advantages that are coming into the new market.

Updating your equipment

It’s fun to buy new things right? Each year, our appliances get one step closer to breaking down completely. At our house, we are running on a 15 year-old-water heater. It’s fine for now, but I’m anticipating a break down soon. What we really should be doing is saving up and getting a new one.

The first thing to look at when getting a new air conditioning unit for power savings is the size. The more powerful the unit, the more power it is going to consume. If you live in a reasonable sized house, you don’t need an air-conditioning unit strong enough to power Brad Pitt’s mansion. The Energy Star guidelines can help you decide which appliance is the right size for you.

There are all sorts of advantages for those who are looking to save money with energy-efficient appliances. Just this month, we went out and bought a new washer. Our old washer was a horrible piece of junk, and that’s being nice. It wouldn’t even drain the water, so after every cycle, our clothes would just soak in a tub full of water until we reached in and spun the thing ourselves. Plus it was a super old model, so it wasn’t the most energy efficient.

When we went looking, we searched for a new energy-efficient washer that would save money on the power bill, and offer the incentives we had heard about. Through a simple submittal proving that we had purchased the washer, we got a small but significant refund for our purchase.

There are all sorts of energy efficient home appliances that come with a rebate; you just have to look for them. It is also important to mail in the rebate, to ensure you get it. Sure a new water heater may have a fifty-dollar rebate, but that doesn’t do you any good unless you submit it. Saving money on your power bill with your new energy-efficient appliances is great, but saving money and getting the rebate is even better.

Everybody wants to save money on their power bill; you just have to take the steps to do it. Maintenance is key, and when maintenance no longer becomes possible, updating to the most energy-efficient products is the next step.

By Cassie Costner

Cassie writes on saving money in every capacity from reducing your power bill, to shopping on a budget. She has consulted with many Salt Lake City electricians, and has tried to find the best way to conserve energy and save money.