Simple tips to keep your electric bills from skyrocketing

Your commuting costs might be down but if you’re still sheltering at home, your energy bills might be creeping up. The experts at Consumer Reports share some simple tips to keep your utility bills down without sacrificing comfort.

Adjusting your thermostat settings is one of the simplest and most significant things you can do to keep your energy bills under control. Lower your thermostat by a few degrees when you have the heat running and raise it a few degrees when it gets warmer and you turn on the A/C.

CR says that programmable or smart thermostats can make this lifestyle change easy. The Honeywell Home RTH8560D is a CR Best buy at $90, and testers said installation is fairly straightforward.

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Other smart thermostats can adjust temperature settings based on your activity and behavior.

CR likes the Nest Thermostat E for about $140.

Some smart thermostats also offer wireless temperature sensors that detect motion in a room. That allows you to heat or cool the space only when it’s being used.

You can curtail costs in the kitchen, too. When cooking smaller meals, use a toaster oven or microwave, which costs less than heating up your big oven.