If you’re conscious about your electric bill or your home’s impact on the environment, then you’re probably not a fan of wasting energy in your house. Unfortunately, you may be doing just that without realizing it. At the least, you’re probably racking up an electric bill that’s higher than it needs to be. With so many ways to burn energy these days, it’s honestly hard not to waste energy. You can make adjustments to your daily routine to try and be more efficient, or you can install things like energy-efficient windows, replace old lightbulbs, and weatherize your home to make a difference. While these are all good ideas, you’ll really need to know what things in your home use the most energy so you can make an effective plan to cut back.
Heating And Cooling Systems
These are by far your biggest culprits for energy consumption accounting for over 40% of your total energy use. This is down from the over 50% we saw in decades past, so these systems aren’t quite the energy guzzlers they used to be. Still, it’s undeniable that temperature control takes a great deal of energy. It may come as a surprise that cooling an interior space actually requires more energy than heating it up, so easing up on the air conditioning a bit during the summer can make a big difference.
Naturally, your location and climate are going to be major factors in how you use your space cooling and heating systems. It’s also generally easier to control the temperature of smaller spaces, like apartments, compared to separate homes. Keeping your air conditioning unit in good condition with regular cleaning and maintenance will ensure it stays as efficient as possible. Find the best energy plan with iSelect. Energy comparison for different providers will help you find the best deal.
Your home’s water heater is another big energy guzzler that likely responsible for 17% of your total energy use. From many homes, this is more than the combined power use for all their other smaller appliances combined. Of course, hot water is essential to properly clean our plates, utensils, clothes, and not to mention ourselves, so this is hardly surprising. Still, there are ways you can upgrade your water heater or insulate it so it’s more efficient, and you can likely lower your power bill by washing bigger loads or making sure you only use hot water when needed.
Most people are taught from an early age to turn the lights off when leaving a room, and for good reason. Lighting is responsible for approximately 15% of worldwide power consumption, though this number should lower when more areas switch to LED technology. Using more efficient bulbs now and leaving blinds/curtains open during the day can both decrease your light bill.
Ovens and Refrigeration
Your oven and refrigerator typically account for around 4% of your power use each, which is understandable considering how often they’re used. There isn’t much you can do to lower your refrigerator’s energy consumption other than making each trip to it count. You can potentially make your oven use more efficient by preparing more meals at a time, so you’ll be stocked for multiple days. While you’re being environmentally conscious, you can also recycle your used cooking oil collection.
Also referred to as standby power, this is where devices continue to leech power even after being turned off. Basically any device that’s still plugged in can continue to draw electricity, so entertainment devices like TVs and videogame consoles are common users of vampire power. Devices that are always on “standby,” or that have external power supplies, can activate quickly, but the convenience may come at increased power costs. Plugging these devices into power strips can make them more efficient, and it’s a good idea to unplug devices that aren’t used regularly.