An October 2020 report by Rewiring America makes an astonishing prediction. The average American household can dramatically reduce its carbon footprint and save between $1,050 – $2,585 per year on energy costs! The primary driver of that savings is residential solar power. Going solar, along with energy-efficient electrical appliances and EVs are shown in the report to save money over fossil-fuel-powered alternatives.
How to make your home energy-efficient and save money
The cheapest electricity you can buy is often the electricity you generate for yourself. Home batteries may increase your savings by allowing you to store some of the electricity that you generate for later use. You may even be able to get paid for some of the power you store in your batteries if you become part of a virtual power plant.
Appliance electrification can save money and cut carbon when going solar with batteries
The electricity that you generate and store for yourself is often cheaper than natural gas or propane. By going solar and switching to electric appliances, you could cut your monthly energy bill and reduce your carbon footprint. Newer energy-efficient appliances such as tankless water heaters can save money and improve your home. Instead of one central water heater, a home with tankless water heaters can have multiple heaters installed close to where hot water is used. Imagine not having to wait for the shower to heat up!
Gasoline is the average American household’s largest energy expenditure
The Rewiring America report breaks down the average annual household costs for energy across all 50 states. In all 50 states, gasoline is the highest annual expenditure for fuel. Electric cars and even plug-in hybrid EVs can eliminate or significantly reduce the amount of money spent on gasoline by the average American household.
Electricity vs. Gas: How much do you really save with an electric vehicle?
The author of this article owns a Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The Volt is an electric vehicle with an onboard generator. It can run purely on battery power or run purely on the gas engine. Thanks to that, the Volt provides an apples-to-apples comparison of the price of running on gas versus the price of running on electricity:
- Battery = At $0.12 per kilowatt-hour, it costs $1.20 for a full charge. Gives 60-mile range
- Gas = At $3.20 per gallon, it costs $25.60 to fill up. Gives 240-mile range
- Four battery charges give the same range as 8 gallons of gas
- 4 charges = $4.80 vs $25.60 for gas
- Electric savings = $20.80
Regardless of the fuel economy of the vehicle, you are currently driving, an electric vehiclecould save you enough money over what you pay for gas right now to cover a significant portion of your car payment!
Gas vs. Electricity: How much do you save with energy-efficient electrical appliances?
The price of solar panels and energy storage has dropped rapidly in recent years. Because of that reduced cost, over the lifetime of an appliance, you can save money by going electric when you upgrade your appliances. The Rewiring America study examined the cost of buying energy-efficient electrical appliances and powering them with a combination of grid and solar power to buying and fueling gas-powered appliances.
At current energy and appliance prices, a home with energy-efficient appliances could save as much as $1,000 per year versus paying to run gas appliances. An even more optimistic scenario emerges if energy-efficient appliances can be manufactured on a large scale. This would reduce their cost of manufacturing, in return would lower the price for customers. In this scenario, the energy-efficient appliances could save as much as $2,500 per year.
Where the biggest savings come from
If one were to look at the Rewiring America study to find a roadmap for cutting costs, the biggest savings come in this order:
- Go solar – Cuts your utility bill
- Electric vehicle – Cuts your gas cost, America’s largest energy cost!
- Home batteries – Saves a lot if you have time-of-use billing
- Energy-efficient electrical appliances – Helps you get more out of the power you generate and reduces your dependence on the grid.
Going solar, the number one option saves you money on electricity, and batteries can save you money if you have time-of-use billing. Electric cars can save you money no matter how you are billed for electricity. Utilities that use time-of-use billing usually offer special EV rate plans that make charging your car cheap. This is true for all of California’s three main utilities, they all offer EV rates.
A household that goes solar, adds batteries, and utilizes energy-efficient appliances will save money by reducing that home’s dependence on the expensive electricity that utility companies supply. Adding an EV to the household does increase electricity consumption, but even then, charging an EV will cost you a lot less than buying gas!
Freedom Forever can help make the goal of saving money and the environment happen for you
Going energy-efficient is a big step, but it’s a step you can take with confidence with Freedom Forever. You’ll be guaranteed 25 years of reliable electrical generation with our 25-year performance guarantee. Our family of independent authorized dealers are experts on going solar and home batteries in your hometown. They can help you pick the right utility plan for your home and decide if home batteries would be worth it for you. Then after going solar you’ll be able to enjoy years of energy savings and the knowledge that you’re helping save the planet.