How to Save on Electricity as a Family

Without solar panels and signs “Turn off the light when leaving”.

We consider how a family can save on electricity for 100 – 500 rubles a month using two-rate meters or 4000 rubles a year with energy-saving bulbs. And we talk about ways that don’t help.

Two-rate counters day-night

Electricity meters are of one- and two-tariff. Single-rate ones do not consider the time of day, and two-rate ones collect readings on electricity consumption separately during the day – from 7:00 to 23:00 – and separately at night.

Read also: How to Heat a House in Winter and Not Go Broke.

If a family spends more electricity at night, for example, sets a timer on the washing machine and dishwasher, charges phones and laptops at night, and is almost never at home during the day, you can save money by using a two-rate meter. For instance:

  • The family spends 250 kilowatts per month;
  • 1415 rubles will need to be paid according to a one-rate meter.

If a family spends 150 kilowatts out of 250 after 23:00, the calculation will be as follows:

  • 651 rubles per 100 kilowatts at the daily rate;
  • 348 rubles for 150 kilowatts at night rate;
  • 999 rubles – in total.

With a single-rate meter, the family will pay 1,415 rubles a month, and with a two-rate meter – 999 rubles and save 416 rubles a month.

Valentina, Chelyabinsk:– We spend an average of 280 kilowatts per month for a family of four. We live in Chelyabinsk, we have a two-tariff day-night meter, electricity costs 3.86 rubles per kilowatt during the day, and 2.2 rubles at night. In August we paid:

488 rubles for 126.5 daily kilowatts;

331 rubles for 150.5 kilowatts of night.

Total 819 rubles. If we had a one-rate meter, we would pay for all electricity at a rate of 3.36 and it would come out to 930 rubles. And with the two-tariff, we save 111 rubles every month, which makes 1,332 rubles a year.

We do not take into account the costs of installing the meter, because we bought an apartment with a two-tariff meter. At the same time, we do not pay much attention to washing things or charging phones at night. We wash, vacuum and turn on the lights when needed, but of course it turns out that more often we do it closer to the night.

To save more, you can set the timer to wash things overnight and do the same with the dishwasher, if there is one. And also – charge phones, laptops, smartwatches, and all other devices at night.

Image source: Reproduction/Internet

But a two-rate meter can lead to overpayment if a family spends more electricity during the day than at night. Let’s count on the example of a family from Moscow.

You also need to take into account the cost of installing a two-tariff meter. In Moscow, replacing the meter will cost 4150 rubles. If we assume that a family will save 415 rubles a month with a new meter, its installation will pay off 10 months.


How to save money on electricity for a family: two-tariff meters

  • What needs to be done: replace the one-rate meter with a two-rate meter
  • How much: 4150 rubles in Moscow
  • How much can you save: 300 – 500 rubles per month
  • Payback period: 8 – 13 months
  • Suitable for: those who spend more electricity at night than during the day

Energy-saving lamps

If you replace incandescent bulbs with energy-saving ones, you can save almost 5,000 rubles per year. Let’s compare two lamps: incandescent and energy-saving. Let’s calculate the consumption for each according to Moscow tariffs.

How to save on electricity with energy saving lamps
An incandescent lamp for 19 rubles and an  energy-saving lamp for 42 rubles

To find out how much one lamp costs, you need to divide its power by 1000 – this will be the energy consumption per hour, multiply by the burning hours, and by the rate at the tariff, in Moscow, it is 5.66 rubles.

An energy-saving lamp takes 5.4 times less money per month. But usually, more than one light bulb is on in an apartment. For example, let’s take a three-room apartment with 16 bulbs – they will not all be lit at the same time, so we calculate that each one is lit for three hours a day, for a total of 90 hours a month per lamp:

  • for 90 hours of burning one incandescent light bulb, the family will pay 30.5 rubles a month, for 16 lamps – 490 rubles;
  • for 90 hours of energy-saving – 5.6 rubles, for 16 lamps – 90 rubles.

Saving on electricity per month 400 rubles, but you still need to consider the purchase of energy-saving lamps – 656 rubles for 16 pieces. These lamps last 10,000 hours, which means they will last 111 months, or 9 years. Let’s calculate the savings over 9 years, taking into account the purchase of lamps.

Saving on electricity due to energy-saving lamps for 9 years – 44 650 rubles, or 4 961 rubles per year.

How a family can save on electricity: energy-saving light bulbs

  • What needs to be done: Replace incandescent bulbs with energy-efficient ones
  • How much: 656 rubles for 16 bulbs
  • How much can you save: RUB 4,961 per year
  • Payback period: 2 months
  • Suitable for: everyone

Regular kettle instead of electric

A 2200 watt electric kettle heats 1.5 liters of water in 6 minutes. If a family drinks tea five times a day, it takes 900 minutes or 15 hours per month. In money, it turns out: 2.2 kilowatts × 15 × 5.66 = 187 rubles.

Also read: 6 Signs You Have Financial Problems Even When You Don’t See it

If a family pays for gas according to the number of registered in the apartment, 58.43 rubles per person in Moscow per month, and 234 rubles for four people. The family will pay this amount regardless of the gas consumption. Therefore, if you switch to a regular kettle, the gas costs will not increase. But you still need to buy a kettle. An ordinary teapot with a whistle costs about 500 rubles, which means that it will pay off in 3 months.


Now let’s calculate how much the family will pay if the apartment has gas meters:

  • it takes 12 minutes to heat a kettle with a volume of 1.5 liters, or 30 liters of gas – in cubic meters, it is 0.03 cubic meters;
  • per month – 4.5 cubic meters of gas;
  • a cubic meter costs 7.04 rubles;
  • gas for a kettle costs 32 rubles per month.

In comparison with an electric kettle, the savings per month are 155 rubles.

How a family can save on electricity: a regular kettle instead of an electric one

  • What you need to do: boil water in a regular kettle on the gas
  • How much: 500 rubles to buy a kettle
  • How much can you save: 1,850 rubles per year
  • Payback period: 3 months
  • Suitable for: owners of gas stoves

Dashboard with separate automatic refrigerator

Electrical appliances consume energy at rest. In the technical specifications, this is called “standby power.”

Adapted and translated by Wiki Avenue Staff

Sources: Life hacker