Utility Cost in Pennsylvania: Tips, Average Costs, Fees and More
The cost of living in Pennsylvania is affordable, especially that the Pennsylvania electricity rates are relatively lower than many other states. Its living cost is generally lower than the national average by around 10 percent. Notably, Pennsylvania tax on income is fairly low.
In Pennsylvania, the highest utility cost that drains the residents’ wallets is electricity. An average family in the state spends around $114 per month on electricity. Other utility bills you should also budget for are the internet, natural gas, water, cable, and trash collection.
You will most likely spend more money on utility bills if you reside in your home than when you rent an apartment in Pennsylvania. Homeowners need closer to $400 per month to take care of their utility costs while tenants would need around $100-$150 every month.
Costs of Electricity in Pennsylvania
Residential electric rates in pa are slightly higher than the national average by around 3.83 percent. On average, the state’s residential electricity rate is 13.83 cents per kWh, while that of the United States is 13.30 cents per kWh.
When it comes to electric bills in Pennsylvania, the average residential electricity bill that consumers pay every month is $114.48, ranking 18th in the United States. That’s generally higher the national average, which is $110.76 per month.
Electricity consumption in Pennsylvania is relatively high as most energy goes into home heating during winter and cooling during summer. Large electric appliances that residents use also consume a significant amount of electricity.
Here are some of the tips that will help you save money on electricity bills in Pennsylvania.
Upgrade to a Programmable Thermostat
Since most of your money goes into heating and cooling your home, you should install a programmable thermostat to help regulate your house temperature. This energy-efficient thermostat can help you save up to 30 percent electricity on cooling and heating.
Programmable thermostats automatically respond to your room temperature preferences over time. You can pre-set them to save energy while you are away from home or asleep and to keep you comfortable when you are at home.
Run Large Electrical Appliances during Off-Peak Hours
It’s no doubt that large electrical appliances such as washing machines, refrigerators, and driers consume a lot of energy than small electric appliances. To save on electricity, you should run the appliances during off-peak hours when rates are low, usually after 8 pm.
Another best way to save energy is to buy appliances that energy star-rated. Also, you don’t have to heat water when using the washing machine or heat dry your utensils when using the dishwashers. Also, unplug the appliances when they are not in use.
Upgrade Your Lighting System
If you still use the traditional incandescent bulbs, replace them with the new light-emitting diode (LED) and compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) bulbs. The bulbs usually emit low heat, reducing their energy consumption. Always remember to switch them off when not in use.
How to Get the Best Electricity Rates in Pennsylvania
Just as implementing the energy-saving tips can help you save on electricity, purchasing electricity from a reputable power company can also reduce your monthly electricity bills. Here is how to find the most favorable electricity deal in Pennsylvania.
Know the Pennsylvania Electricity Companies in Your Area
Many companies that generate and supply electricity operate in Pennsylvania, including the Electric Generation Suppliers (EGS) and Electric Distribution Companies (EDCs). The Public Utility Commission oversees all the activities of these companies.
You can choose to buy electricity directly from an electric generation supplier or your local utility company (EDC). However, EGS companies offer relatively cheaper electricity rates than EDCs. Some of the PA electric suppliers you can find include:
- Constellation Energy
- Green Mountain Energy
- Direct Energy
- Spark Energy
Ensure that you find the pa electric providers near you. The four companies mentioned above are just a few examples. You can find more options here, together with their rates.
Compare Pennsylvania Electricity Rates in Your Region
Electricity companies in Pennsylvania offer almost similar services but at different prices. You should compare the electric rates in PA to find the lowest electricity rates. Visit your electric supplier’s site and click the “price to compare” tab to get rates of other providers.
Many other websites, such as electricrate.com, also allow you to compare electricity rates of different electric providers in your area. Choose a company that offers not only the best prices but also the most convenient terms of service.
Cost of Natural Gas in Pennsylvania
Most people in Pennsylvania use natural gas for cooking and for warming the house when it’s cold, especially during winters. Some people also use natural gas to heat water and to pump it along pipes. The unit of energy for natural gas is the British Thermal Unit (BTU).
On average, Pennsylvania households consume about 96 million BTUs of gas every year, which is eight percent greater than the national average. The residential prices of natural gas in Pennsylvania has been increasing steadily for the past few months.
The average cost of natural gas for residential consumers in Pennsylvania is $20.55 per thousand cubic feet, which is higher than the U.S. average of $17.89 per thousand cubic feet. On average, households in Pennsylvania spend $73.14 per month on natural gas.
How to Save on Natural Gas Bills
The best way to reduce your bills on natural gas is by replacing the furnace air filters for at least once in every three months. Dirty air filters slow down airflow through the furnace, making it quite difficult to heat your home efficiently.
Cost of Water in Pennsylvania
The average water rate in Pennsylvania varies significantly by many factors. Generally, the price of water in the state is higher than the costs in other states, as many people reside in Pennsylvania on limited water supply.
On average, Pennsylvania households use 100 gallons of water each day, translating into 3000 gallons of water every month. Families with many people or additional daily uses like sprinklers utilize more water than the average usage.
Pennsylvania cities set prices for both water and sewer costs. Most people pay $5 to $8 per 1000 gallons of water. However, cities like Pittsburg charge a flat rate of $14 or $15 for all customers provided they will use 1000 gallons of water at that cost. On average, Pennsylvania households spend $70.39 per month on both water and sewerage services.
How to Save on Your Water Bills
Minimizing water usage is the best way to cut back your water bills. Use as little water as possible in every usage. For instance, you should turn off water faucets while still brushing your teeth. You can also reduce your shower time by 3-5 minutes to save more water.
Cost of Cable TV and Internet in Pennsylvania
Many Pennsylvania households have cable subscriptions, which cost $85 per month on average. The internet costs vary depending on speed and connection type. A slow dial-up connection costs at least $10 per month and fast connections up to $150 per month.
To save on cable and internet bills, you can combine both utilities into one monthly bundle to reduce the bills. Shop around to find a company that offers the best cable and internet deals. You can also check around to see if there are promotional services.
Other Utility Bills in Pennsylvania
Pew Research Center reports that 96 percent of American adults use mobile phones. On average, Pennsylvania households spend $100-$200 per month on mobile phone bills. The best way to cut back the bills is by taking full advantage of promotional services.
Another utility is the garbage collection or recycling bill. Garbage collection costs around $8 – $12 per month on average. Recycling the garbage is relatively cheaper as it costs $3 – $5 per month. You should generate less trash to reduce your monthly garbage bills.
Now that you understand the average costs of various utilities in Pennsylvania, you can work on your budget to accommodate all your monthly bills. Try as much as possible to conserve water and to use the natural gas sparingly to cut back your utility bills. To save on electricity, select a power supplier with the lowest Pennsylvania electricity rates.