Preventing Huge Holiday Electric Bills
It’s that time of year again. The holiday season is upon us. With Thanksgiving approaching at the end of this week many people either have already or will soon set up their Christmas decorations. Decorations are a great way to get into the season and spread cheer but they can also be a great way to increase your electric bills. As Christmas trees and decorative lighting get plugged in electric bills go up. The exact amount the bills will increase depends on the lighting you choose and how you plan to use the lighting. Being aware of this extra use can help prevent a budget busting bill in a season that is already known for breaking the budget. How do you plan to manage your electricity this Christmas season?
In an attempt to keep electric bills low many users will substitute a lamp or a light for a Christmas tree. While the lighting may not be as bright the mood is definitely more seasonal. The question then becomes how does my Christmas tree compare to a regular lamp? How much extra am I paying? The answer to that question varies on multiple items. Are the bulbs on your Christmas tree standard or LED? How many strands of lights does your tree have? Another item coming into play in terms of electricity bills are fireplaces. Acquiring firewood is not the only expense accompanied with a fireplace; an opened flue can equal the same amount of heat loss as an open window. Having a fire in the fireplace, with the Christmas tree lit up and Christmas music playing may create a great mood now, but what type of mood will it create when the bill arrives? It may leave you feeling more like Scrooge than Saint Nick.
Changing your Christmas lights to LED, making sure the flue is closed after each fire and only playing Christmas tunes when someone is around to listen, and not just as background music 24/7, may greatly reduce your electric bill. Another item to consider is Christmas light rationing. Some lights get left on 24/7, having them on a switch or in an area that can be turned off easily can make a huge difference. Becoming aware of how much energy your Christmas decorations are using can supply the extra incentive to make sure the lights are turned off, the music is not always playing and the flue gets shut.
The home energy monitor allows users to see exactly how much energy they are currently using in their homes. This helps prevent Scrooge from arriving when the electric bill comes in the mail. If your Christmas tree is using an excessive amount of electricity consider lessening the amount of bulbs, or if you haven’t already, switch to LED. If you plan to substitute the tree for a lamp you can use the home energy monitor to make sure this is a fair trade. It is possible that your tree is using more than the lamp and not even supplying close to the amount of light! Being able to see exactly how much money the lights are costing you will offer the incentives needed to cut back or turn off.