Energy Saving Tips: How COVID-19 is Impacting the Energy We Use in Our Home
Here are a few energy saving tips to help reduce your energy usage, and hopefully, it’ll save you a few bucks each month as we go through COVID-19 together.
It’s April and we’re well into it. We’re stuck at home and getting grumpy. Parents are fighting more with each other, and their kids and Tiger King is becoming very popular. We’re all bored.
You may be thinking, what does all of this have to do with solar? What does it have to do with power and energy usage? COVID-19 is affecting a lot of things.
Energy Saving Tips
One of the essential things it’s affecting is the way we use our power because now, we’re at home more, and the lights are on more. The water heaters are pumping because you’re either taking baths or showers to relax more, or people are leaving the lights on and roaming around the house. You’ve got laundry going at all hours of the day at this point. People are sleeping in more. The point is, because of this, it’s throwing our schedules off, and we want to address that and give you a few energy saving tips to help reduce your energy usage.
When we’re helping clients switch to solar, one of the main things we do is help them reduce their energy costs before they even make that switch.
If you’re not doing these things already, whether you have solar or not, these are some great energy saving tips.
#1: Turn off the lights.
Turn off the lights when you leave a room. One way to getting around having to go around your home, turning the lights off continually, is to automate them. Google Home and Alexa are fantastic little devices for this. You can simply say, “Hey, Google, turn off all the lights in the house,” and it’ll do that. That’s one way, but you have to invest in an automation system to do that. There’s a cost. The other way is to remind everyone in the home to be mindful and shut off the lights.
#2: Use natural light.
Don’t use light bulbs during the day. Open your blinds and windows, and use natural light.
#3: Stop doing small loads of laundry.
Do laundry in larger loads. It may sound funny that we’re telling you how to do laundry or when to do laundry. Still, frankly, a lot of times when you do laundry, it’s just because you want to get some socks or something particular. And so, you’ll do smaller loads. It takes about the same amount of energy to do a small load than it does a large load. So wait, gather up some laundry a little longer. That’ll save energy.
#4: Change your lightbulbs.
Change out your light bulbs for energy-efficient light bulbs. If you’re not using energy-efficient light bulbs, LED light bulbs where you can and where that makes sense, you’re losing out on energy savings. You can save thousands of dollars over just a few years from changing your light bulbs. You may as well do it. It’s not expensive to change the light bulbs. Yes, they’re a little bit more, but they pay off, and it’s well worth it.
So those are a few energy saving tips you can make whether you have solar or not.
The Truth About True-ups
When you have solar, a true-up means you’re connected to the grid. Say your home is connected to SDG&E’s power grid.
If you’re using more than what your solar produces, it pulls it from SDG&E’s grid. The sun hits the panels on your roof. It provides as much energy as it can, allowing you to do laundry, keep the lights on, and use power with everything else.
When the sun goes down, and the sun is no longer supplying energy to your solar panels, that power is coming from SDG&E, which is producing what’s called a true-up amount or credits. When you’re pulling energy from SDG&E’s grid, you’re using credits from SDG&E.
Let’s say it’s the opposite, and the energy from your solar panels produce more in that day, month, or week. That extra energy goes back into the grid, and you get credits now. That’s a true-up.
The only time they bill you or give you credit towards your accounts is at the end of the year.
COVID-19 may be jacking up your credits.
Due to COVID-19, everybody’s at home using lots of energy.
You may already have a system on your solar panels that’s providing you with 115% or 120% more energy and think you can use it loosely. However, right now, you may be using too much. Your true-up bill is going to be outrageous at the end of the billing cycle with SDG&E.
Watch those credits. You can check them online in your app or on your bill, and you can see your true-up there and see where your balance is.
Be careful. You don’t want to be surprised by a big true-up bill because of COVID-19 because you’re home a lot more.
We like that SDG&E and other power companies are doing that for us as we’re trying to figure out this whole COVID-19 thing.
Switching to solar makes sense more than ever right now.
Because of COVID-19, we’ve been getting even more people set up with solar. No one wants a higher power bill right now.
One of the easiest and fastest ways to save is to switch to a power purchase agreement, which immediately lowers your bill with no out of pocket payment. There are no payments whatsoever.
It’s a straightforward process. Solar gets installed on your roof, and everything’s insured. The power gets switched to solar, and it’s anywhere from 25% to up to 60% less than what you’d pay SDG&E.
You can still do the energy saving tips we mentioned above to help reduce your bill, but getting solar on your roof is the way to go. You’re going to be able to see an immediate reduction, especially with a power purchase agreement.
Solar savings without any out of pocket costs
You may be thinking that you don’t want to get a loan or that you don’t have the money to get solar, but we’re not talking about getting a loan or purchasing panels here.
We’re talking about getting a power purchase agreement and locking yourself into a reasonable rate with either Sunrun or Sunnova. Sunnova is who we work with. You’ll have a much lower rate meaning a lower power bill. All you’re doing is switching your utility over.
If you want to learn more about the difference between a Power Purchase Agreement versus a loan, check out these two blogs below.
Save money immediately with a Power Purchase Agreement.
We’re not saying you shouldn’t do a loan, but most of us just want to lower our power bill, and getting a power purchase agreement will do just that.
If you’re watching your power bill stack up, solar might be an excellent solution for you. All you have to have is a 650 credit score and be a homeowner. Unfortunately, you can’t be renting to get a power purchase agreement unless you convince the homeowner to do it for you.
Going with a power purchase agreement option is a great way to save immediately. It doesn’t cost you anything out of pocket. It doesn’t go on your credit as a loan or against your debt to income ratio. There’s a simple credit check, just like a hard utility credit check. That’s all.
Are the savings on solar really worth it?
If you want our help, one of the first steps to do is to figure out if the savings would be worth it. We would never advise you to get a power purchase agreement or a loan without knowing your savings first.
If you want to know if your savings would be worth it, we’ll do that for you for free. You can text the word BILL to (619) 304-0123, and we’ll get you savings immediately. It takes about an hour or two, but you’ll know exactly how much we can save you.
Be prepared with your power bill. When you text us, we’re going to eventually ask you for a copy of the front page of your power bill, this way, we can see how much you use, and you’re off to the races.
We’ll match that to a proposal and show you what it looks like to get a loan or a power purchase agreement, and how much you’ll save.
We'll pay your solar bill for 12 months.
On top of this, we created a grant where we, not the government, and not SDG&E or the power companies, Switch To Solar, established a grant. We got together and talked with our installation partners, and we all agreed that we want to give back and give more.
When you make the switch to solar with a power purchase agreement, we will pay your new solar bill for the next twelve months. You won’t have a power bill.
If that’s something of interest to you and you don’t have solar on your home, and you’re the homeowner, with at least a 650 credit score, text the word ASSIST to (619) 304-0123.
If you text the word ASSIST, we’ll set you up with a quote and get you applied for the Power Bill Grant. You have to apply for it. It is limited. We can’t pay everyone’s bills, but we will look at helping you. You’ll get a solar proposal, and if you like it, we’ll get you hooked up with solar.
There's no payment required to make the switch to solar.
As soon as you do, upon installation, we start paying your bills for the next 12 months, and you won’t have a solar power bill or a connection fee. There’s a connection fee with SDG&E, a monthly minimum connection fee, but we will give you cash for that over a year.
SDG&E’s connection fee averages to about $10 a month, so we will give you $120 or whatever your connection fee is. You won’t have that bill either.
Let’s say your new solar bill is $100. We’re going to pay that $100 bill for you every month for twelve months. You won’t have a statement until 2021. If you’re reading this in April, then April or May of 2021 will be the first power bill that you’ll ever pay after making the switch to solar. There’s no payment whatsoever to get solar on your roof.
We're giving you a $1500 cash bonus to help during COVID-19.
We’re excited and proud to offer this grant to people. We can’t provide it to everyone, meaning there’s a limited amount we’ll be able to pay for. Still, we hope this helps more families during this difficult time.
A bonus we included in this grant is we will be rewarding some that apply with up to $1500 cash to put towards any other bills as well.
If you’ve been looking into solar, or you are experiencing chaos from COVID-19, lost your job, lost hours, whatever situation you are in, bills are hurting.
We're using more energy than before because we're home.
Power bills keep coming because we keep using power. At the beginning of this blog, we talked about how we’re using more energy than before because we’re home. So if that’s the case for you, and you want to finally make that switch to solar with no out-of-pocket costs whatsoever, we’ll pay your bills. We will never ask for a payment of any sort.
With that grant, we’ll pay your bills for you. If that sounds good to you, then text the word ASSIST to (619) 304-0123.
If you just want to get a price on your savings, text the word BILL to that same number (619) 304-0123.
We hope this has been helpful. We know it’s been crazy with COVID-19 and know families are under stress. We’re in this together, and we’re here to help you. Reach out to us. Let us know how we can help you lower your bills, and we’re happy to be here for you.