Energy Saving Tips
3 Energy Saving Tips at Home
The process of Energy Saving involves simple yet effective ways of decreasing your energy use. We are paying a lot more these days for energy of all kinds to heat our homes and work places so any energy saving tips at home that can help reduce our energy needs isn’t just glamorous but helps to save money and the planet.
Energy Saving is more than just switching off the lights or turning the thermostat down, it’s also increasing energy efficiency so that the heating system does exactly the same job, while using less energy. Energy efficiency belongs at the heart of every low-carbon economy. If the house is old or wasteful, cutting home energy usage by 20 percent, which isn’t hard to do or take too much effort can bring big rewards. If you already live in an energy efficient home, it will be harder to save energy.
A phantom load is an electrical load that consumes electrical energy when it’s thought to be switched off. Leaving a TV in a stand by, or plugging in a phone’s charging port when not using it, can all be good examples.
While all of these issues seem small compared to what a typical home can consume, phantom loads can consume large amounts of electrical energy without you even knowing it. Especially one with teenagers, making it an appealing option for saving energy.
Reducing your electrical load and lowering your energy demand is achieved by energy saving and efficiency measures. Financial gains can be made by achieving energy savings throughout the home since energy costs represent a large share of the total expenses for a typical home. Behavioural changes can be the cheapest and simplest way to reduce electrical demand and utility bills.
3 Main Energy Saving Tips and Ideas
The 3 main energy saving tips you can use to get started saving energy around your home are:
Energy Saving Tip #1. – Cut Down On Energy Consumption:
This is about reducing your energy useage and cutting down on waste by being smart in what you use. Reducing energy consumption lowers energy bills while driving down greenhouse gas emissions.
- Lighting: Replace high wattage light bulbs with more energy efficient bulbs such as LED light bulbs which use up to 75% less energy and last up to 20 times longer than standard incandescent light bulbs. They give out the same amount of light but use less energy so rather than looking for the wattage, look for the lumen’s or how bright the new bulb is instead. Also, by keeping the light bulbs clean from dust, you’ll get more light.
- Baths: Replace soaking in the bath with a daily shower and use a low-flow shower head. Also, don’t let the hot water run constantly while you’re shaving or washing your hands and face, you’ll be surprised how much water and energy you could save this way. One of the most expensive ways to heat bath water is with an electric water heater. An energy efficient natural gas water heater can heat the water for half as much, or use solar thermal collectors and use the sun’s heat for free.
- Laundry: Use your washing machine’s half load setting for small amounts of clothes and choose a lower temperature setting for larger loads. Its the washing powder that cleans the clothes not the amount of water.
- HVAC: Check your heating and air conditioning filters. Dirty HVAC filters not only increase energy usage, they may also damage your system. Why not have your HVAC system serviced. Regular maintenance can extend its life cycle and operate more efficiency saving you money.
- Heating: Reduce the hours your heating system is operational and check for air leaks through windows and doors. Seal and weather-strip around all seams, cracks and openings to protect against drafts. Upgrade your attic and loft insulation to a minimum of R-38 (about 12-14 inches), which will help save you money on heating and cooling costs.
- Appliances: Buy energy efficient rated appliances for your home and kitchen. A-rated energy star appliances use at least 20 percent less energy than older models. Set the refrigerator temperature to 35 to 37 degrees Fahrenheit (about 3o Celsius) and the freezer temperature between zero and five degrees Fahrenheit (about -15o Celsius). Keep refrigerators and freezers full whenever possible as they retain the cold better than an empty one. Also unplug unused refrigerators or freezers.
Energy Saving Tip #2. – Turn Down Those Dials:
This is about reducing your energy consumption by lowering the settings. Adjusting the settings a degree or two than you would normally have them can save about 10% of energy use, long term.
- Home Heating: Turn down the central heating thermostats to 78 degrees Fahrenheit (25o Celsius) in summer and 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18o Celsius) in winter. Each degree higher or lower can significantly increase your heating costs in winter and cooling costs in summer. Change old bimetallic strip thermostats with newer programmable thermostats to manage your heating system more efficiently, saving energy. Why not use a fireplace to heat your home.
- Water Heating: Check and turn down the thermostat on your boiler. Make sure the thermostat is not set above 120 degrees Fahrenheit (about 50o Celsius). Why not lower the night time thermostat setting by 10 degrees or so while your asleep to reduce your heating costs. Heating water to a higher temperature than is needed not only increases your energy usage, but wastes money. Reducing high water temperatures is a good energy saving tip.
- Radiators and Ducts: Switch off radiators and close heating ducts in the rooms you’re not using regularly and keep internal doors shut. Otherwise draughts and poorly insulated windows will mean you’re burning energy unnecessarily. Fully close shutters, shades and curtains at night to help keep the heat inside the rooms during the cold winter and partially close them during the day to help keep the suns heat outside during the hot summer.
- HVAC: Air-conditioning is a big electricity user and the colder you set the thermostat dial, the higher your utility bill will be. Turn-off the air conditioning unit (AC) when no one is home to save money, or why not use window fans to blow the hot air out or to bring cooler air in instead of switching-on the AC unit.
- Smart Appliances: Many manufacturers nowadays produce smart appliances which can be connected to smart electric meters or to home energy management systems to work only during off-peak hours. Smart appliances don’t just reduce energy or water consumption, they use subtle ways of saving energy by using cheaper electricity at night.
Energy Saving Tips #3. – Shut Down When Not Needed:
This is about turning things “off” completely when not in use. Phantom loads are the electricity used by electronic devices like televisions, phone chargers, monitors, or printers when they are put in standby mode. These are a major source of energy wastage and not very energy efficient.
- Lighting: Get into the habit of turning lights off when you leave a room, even if you’ll only be gone for a moment. Use outdoor motion detection sensors and photo-cell lighting controllers or install automatic timers on indoor and outdoor lighting circuits. Dimmers can save electricity when used to lower light levels.
- Electrical Appliances: Mobile phones, TV’s, laptops and iPad chargers left on standby are still using energy. Switching them off and unplugging them once they’re fully charged is a great way of saving energy. Switching unused appliances off is a good energy saving tip as it eliminates phantom loads that can secretly consume electrical energy in their stand-by mode from a single tiny watt to many ten’s of watts without you knowing it.
- Water Heating: Turn off your water heater when your home is empty for two or more days. Fix dripping and leaky taps and faucets especially for hot water as this can waste gallons of hot water in a short period of time. Why not insulate your water heater and pipes to save energy and money.
- Close the Chimney: Closing off the chimney with a metal damper or panel when the fireplace is not in use, stops the warm air in your home from getting sucked up the chimney due to drafts causing cooler air to enter the room. Lock and sealed windows to improve their seal and prevent the cold air from entering the room in the first place improving your homes energy saving performance.
Conserve Energy To Lower Costs
The potential for energy savings by using more efficient appliances and routines at the point of use is very large indeed. A home with an energy efficient design will not only save you money but will also keep you and your family safe. You will see a reduction in energy bills over time if you make larger investments to make your home more energy efficient, or take the simple energy saving tips above.
One way to reduce a lot of energy is by avoiding careless habits like leaving the lights and fans on when no one is around, cranking up the heating or HVAC, and so on. Reducing your energy consumption and needs by installing energy saving devices like LEDs, compact fluorescent bulbs (CFL), switching “off” unused appliances, eliminating phantom loads and other such measures can be done quickly and easily if you want to save money.
You could save a lot of money by replacing the three or four most frequently used light bulbs in your house with more energy efficient equivalents, as they give you more control over your energy bill, as every kilowatt-hour of electricity or a gallon of water you save gives you more control over your energy bills.
Energy Saving Summary
To improve the energy efficiency of your home, there are many options available for you to consider. For example, using thermal insulation, temperature control, passive heating and cooling, or using renewable energy resources and solar technologies in the home to consume less. There are many energy saving ideas and energy saving devices available to lower electricity costs.
Energy Saving through renewable and non-polluting energy sources such as the solar design of photovoltaics and solar hot water panels replaces the amount of purchased energy you buy from the utility companies. The amount of energy used today to heat domestic water and for space heating is enormous and the possible energy savings in using the suns solar energy is an attractive option for saving energy. Don’t forget, the more energy you save, the less coal is burnt and the less impact we have on the environment.
Saving money and energy isn’t very hard to do. The key to saving energy is taking a whole-house approach, which means look at your home more as a system of energy using system than a series of interdependent rooms and areas. In the long term, installing more A-rated energy efficient appliances will pay for itself. When we waste the energy in our homes, we end up throwing away money which we could use to do other things.
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