Save Money on Electricity & Lighting

Save on Electricity and Lighting with these tips - an antique lamp with a red shade.

Our priority at MoneySmartFamily is to help readers improve their finances and we partner with companies that could help you. Some links on this page are from our partners. Read how we earn money here.

This Electricity & Lighting Money-Saving Tips Page contains ideas from our readers on how to trim your electric bill!

This page contains everyday tips on Bathroom Lighting, saving by not over-drying clothes in your Dryer, Ceiling Fans, Curtains, Using a clothes Line and how to Identify the right side of a polarized Electrical Plug.

Electricity & Lighting Tip #1 – Using Less Light in Your Bathroom

Our bathroom has two light bars that hold five light bulbs each. Even with 25-watt bulbs in each socket, that’s 250 watts of light each time we flip them on. We’ve decided to only screw in two bulbs
A bathroom light bar with5 lights and 2 of them burned out.

tightly in each bar, and leave the other three bulbs in, but loose, so they don’t light. We save electricity, light bulbs, and most importantly, save our eyes from the excessively bright light early in the morning.   Beth and Curtis Gillespie – Spokane, WA 

Save Money on Utilities Tip #2 – Saving More by Setting Less Drying Time in Your Dryer

To save on electricity, don’t over-dry your clothes. In the past, I would set my dryer for the longest time – 70 minutes. One day, I noticed that my clothes were dry in just 40 minutes. So, now, I just set the timer for 40 minutes and save 30 minutes of electricity on every load I dry!   Tina Marie Morgan – Cumming, GA

 Money Saving Tip #3 – Using Ceiling Fans in the Winter?

A four bladed ceiling fan spinning on a white ceiling.

Do you know that most ceiling fans have a little switch, next to the pull chains, that will reverse the direction that the fan spins? We read about this in literature all the time, but we actually use this feature in the winter when we have our fireplace insert box going. The fan helps move the warmer air down from the ceiling and warms up the entire living room instead of the area just next to the fireplace box insert. It really makes a difference and as a result, we burn less wood and run the heat less.   Claudia Bouchard – Jewett City, CT

 Money-Saving Tip #4 – Free Solar Light Inside & Outside the House

Saving on utilities is always a good idea if you can do it and do it safely. Elisha Bundschuh from Phoenixville, PA had this idea.

I heard of a friend who used a solar yard lamp inside her home during a thunderstorm. I can take that one step further.

Years ago, I lived with two roommates and we had very little extra spending money. We were always looking for ways to save a buck or two and our electric bill was one area where we thought we had done enough, but we were wrong!

During a trip to a local hardware store to pick up some nails, we noticed that there were TWO types of solar yard lamps available- fixed (on a spike or stake), or hanging (from a hook, sometimes connected to a stake). We saw that it was only $20 for a three-pack of solar lamps (I’ve since seen four packs for the same price, on sale).

We bought two packs of them and six of those pretty plant hangers that people sometimes use for their hanging plants (the ones that look like pretty shelf brackets, but with hooks).

Solar Light Installation at Home

When we got home, we mounted the plant hangers over or next to four windows in our house and put the solar lamps on them. Then, we hung the other two on the house, next to the front and back doors. In the late afternoon or early evening, we would open up the blinds to allow the sunlight to “charge” the indoor lights. The outdoor lights took care of themselves.

At night, we had free household lighting that would last until sunrise if we’d charged them long enough!  We kept a piece of nice material in rooms that we needed to sleep in, in order to cover the lights when it was time to go to sleep.

The day after we started doing this, we had a neighbor call us to let us know that we’d left both our porch lights on overnight. We asked if it had disturbed her.

“No,” she said, “I was just worried about your electric bill. Actually, I felt safer when I came home from work and they were on, because I could see to put my key into the lock!”

“Well,” said my roommate, “You’ll feel safer EVERY night then, because we’re leaving them on from now on — in fact, we CAN’T turn them off! They’re SOLAR lamps and the power is FREE!”  Elisha Bundschuh – Phoenixville, PA

Electricity & Lighting Tip #5 – Curtains Keep Rooms Warm

With winter cold and rising fuel costs, keeping nice and warm in at least one room of the house is very comforting. But if it’s the kitchen or family room that you’d most like to have at or over 70 degrees, this can be a problem as often the doorways are open, with no way to close them. We’ve found that a curtained opening is really a lovely solution. Although it takes a little planning and work to get it in place, it is more than worth it. Just one length of fabric, lightly gathered, will keep the heat in almost as well as a solid door. You can either make your own curtains or buy them pre-made from JC Penney’s or other home furnishing stores. Then install an inexpensive tension rod and you’re all set to stay warm and save on your utilities.   Elizabeth Hardisty – Mercer Island, WA

Save Money on Utilities Tip #6 – Using a Clothes Line to Save Money

Clothes hanging on a clothes line.

We use a clothesline to save money out here. We hang our laundry out. We live in a rainy climate, so we do have a gas dryer for when we can’t get our clothes dry at all. Gas is less expensive to run here than electricity. Also, we hang out the kids’ jeans and t-shirts under the porch so that they won’t shrink and they can wear them longer.   Debbie L. – Papua New Guinea

Money-Saving Tip #7 – Identifying Polarized Electrical Plugs

A hand plugging a cord into an outlet. The plug has a white line painted on the top of it.

Since I’m a senior and my eyesight isn’t what it used to be. I’ve been having trouble inserting these newer polarized plugs into outlets. They can only go in one way because of the larger prong on one side. I have marked the top of the plug with a line of bright colored nail polish. If I can see the polish, I know the plug is going to go in the right way.   Carol Meola – Scottsdale, AZ

Money-Saving Tip #8 – Save Energy Using Your Stove

I save on my energy bill when cooking. When an item cooking in the oven has about 15 or 20 minutes left to go, I turn off the oven and leave the item in there to finish cooking. The oven is hot enough to complete the job. If I’m cooking pasta, I bring the water to a boil, add the pasta, put on a lid, bring the water back to a boil and turn off the stove. I stir it occasionally and it usually takes about 15 minutes to cook. Dianne Meir – Tacoma, WA

Click this link if you’d like to read how kids can help save electricity!
Check out our Pinterest board for Utility Savings!

A red lampshade on an antique lamp, lighting up a yellow wall.

If you have other ways to save on electricity and lighting, please share your ideas in the comments below and we’ll review for inclusion on this page.

2 thoughts on “Save Money on Electricity & Lighting

  1. donna j burham

    If you use a pellet stove, make sure you unplug it as soon as you are finished burning it for the season. I think I save about $20 on electricity during the summer.

    Also, I started using the little LED lights as a night light in my kitchen and bath, rather than burning a kitchen light all night. I think that shaves off another couple of dollars. Love the tip above about using the solar lamps inside, and can’t wait to try it…

    1. Steve Economides Post author

      Great tips Donna, thanks for sharing! We’ve found deals on LED lights at a number of stores and have converted almost all of our lights to LED!

Leave a Reply