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Okay gang, moment of truth. The July electric bill is in. Here’s where we find out if Operation Frugalight was a success.

Our Goal: to reduce our electric bill/usage by 30%, which would erase the effects of the recent 30% INCREASE in rates by our electric company.

In order to aim for this lofty goal, I put several energy reducing strategies in play:

(1) Switched our electric over to Dominion.com, which guarantees a 15% decrease in rates. The switchover to Dominion was on July 8th, so hopefully that’ll be a huge help.
(2) Last july, I was still drying clothes in the clothes dryer. This July, I’m doing everything on the clothesline. It’s been doing us a lot of good since we started doing it last September; with any luck it’ll contribute nicely to lowering this month’s bill.
(3) Last july, I was still using my dishwasher. This july, the dishwasher is ME. I use the actual dishwasher as a drying rack only, and run it once every two weeks just to keep it in good shape.
(4) I replaced eighteen 60-watt bulbs with the new squigeldy GE Energy Star bulbs (they’re 13 watt bulbs that light like 60 watts). Boiling down the math as described on the back of the package, I’m supposed to save approximately .92 per month per bulb. These bulbs alone should save us around $17. Let’s hope!
(5) Turned off the computers whenever not in use. I used to keep them up & running even when I was out of the house (I know, I know…), but this month, if I was out, the computer was out too.

Last year’s bill was $217.57. My goal is to have this July’s bill at 217.56 or LESS. If I had done nothing differently from last year, the bill would be 30% higher, or $282.84.

Today, upon opening the mailbox, I immediately spotted the robin’s egg blue of the utility company envelope, and tore it open with breathless anticipation! The bill for this month…$235.17. WHAT?! An INCREASE! It’s 8% HIGHER than last year’s bill! ARRRGH!

Okay, thru my new red-rimmed vision, I notice that the average temp last July was 72 degrees, where this July’s average temp was 79 degrees. No doubt that played into it. But STILL! An INCREASE! Craaaaap! Okay, an 8% increase is better than a 30% increase but COME ON! Sheah. Ah, well.

Thanks to everybody who sent in their FANTASTIC ideas on saving electricity. No doubt your feedback & great ideas helped put money back into a lot of hard-working people’s pockets!

On to a new challenge! We’re deep into August at this point, so start throwing me ideas for a frugal challenge in September!

Later, guys! K

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