This week was no different–CUB staffers Laura Goldberg, Ivonne Hernandez and Yami Newell took to Hanover Park and showed consumers how to cut their bills by an average of about $11 a month, or $132 per year.
Laura showed Arlene and Pat Devitt, from Bartlett, how to accurately read their utility bills and gave them advice on how to cut down their gas bills in the winter by turning the heat down to between 65 and 72 degrees.
She also pointed out that their alternative electricity supplier, Liberty Power, actually was charging them a higher price than ComEd’s rate as of June, 5.5 cents per kilowatt hour. The Devitts can either choose another supplier or consider returning to ComEd.
Helen Hargis, a Streamwood resident, was surprised to learn that electronic devices that are plugged in but not in use (i.e. DVD players, laptop chargers) can waste up to 10 percent of a home’s energy use.
“I never would have thought of that!” Helen said. (CUB says simply unplugging devices and using smart powerstrips around the house can help.)
Laura also gave Helen guidance on her phone bill. Helen’s home phone service is tied up in an expensive cable bundle, so Laura advised her to consider choosing AT&T’s Consumer’s Choice plans for local calls and to use her cellphone for all other calls.
In addition to free information, CUB also handed out free goodies–CFL lightbulbs, to be exact. They use 75 percent less energy than traditional bulbs, and can save a home up to $50 over the lifetime of the bulb.
Check out CUB’s event calendar to see where we’ll be next.