Smart Ways to Save Electricity
Reducing your home energy bill is easier than you might think, and you can start saving right now.
It’s all about making simple changes to how and when you use power. And remember, changing a few small habits can add up to large savings over time.
Start by looking at your appliances that use the most power, such as water heating, air-conditioning and room heating. Whenever you buy a new electrical appliance, look for comparative energy efficiencies of different models. The more efficient, the cheaper it will be run.
AROUND THE HOME
- Install ceiling insulation to bring down your heating and cooling costs
- Close curtains to reduce heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer
- Shut doors to close off rooms that don’t need heating
- Don’t overheat your home unnecessarily – just increasing your thermostat setting by 1C degree can increase running costs by 10%
- Regularly clean the filter of your air-conditioner
- Change your clothes to warm up or cool down – instead of turning up your heater or air-conditioner
- Choose energy-efficient appliances by comparing the energy rating label before you buy
- Turn off appliances if you’re not using them, and switch off lights when you leave the room
- Clean heaters by removing dust and fluff from the fan and reflective surfaces
- Switch to high efficiency compact fluorescent light globes particularly in frequently used areas. You can save up to 80% in running costs, plus CFLs can last up to eight times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs.
IN THE KITCHEN
- Don’t forget to defrost your freezer if the ice is more than 5mm thick
- Every so often, remove the dust from the fridge condenser coil using a vacuum cleaner
- Check your fridge’s magnetic door seal for any air leaks
- Make sure your fridge’s on and off cycle is working properly
- Always fill your kettle from the cold tap
- Only fill your kettle with the amount of water you need, to save energy and water
- Make sure your oven seal is in good condition, and doesn’t leak heat
- Wait until your dishwasher (if you have one) is full of dishes before running it
- Use your microwave oven (if you have one) where appropriate for cooking, re-heating and defrosting
- Consider choosing a ceramic or induction cook-top for precise temperature control and easier, faster cooking.
IN THE LAUNDRY
- The thermostat shouldn’t be set above 65C
- Make sure your hot water system outlet pipe is well insulated
- Turn off your hot water system when you go on holidays
- Repair hot water taps as soon as you find a leak
- Install a timer on your solar hot water heater booster
- Have a qualified tradesperson periodically check your water heater, as often as the manufacturer recommends.
- Use cold water in your washing machine whenever you can
- If used, load your clothes dryer going by the operating instructions
- Clean the lint filter in your clothes dryer after each use
- Use your clothes line in fine weather instead of your clothes dryer.
Energy saving tips
Here are some ideas of how to save money by reducing the amount of energy you use around the house. From the different appliances you have around the house, through to how to use them more efficiently, we’re here to help you save money, reduce the energy you’re using or wasting, and in doing so, help the environment. The less energy you use to heat, light and power your home, the less harmful emissions you’ll be releasing into our environment. So, check out these helpful hints, and get started today with saving energy and money.
One of the simplest and most effective ways to save energy is to reduce the amount of standby power you use. You can start saving money with just a flick of a switch.
Many common home appliances use standby power when they’re turned on at the wall, but you’re not actually using them. When the appliance is in standby mode, it’s ready to use at any time. But to give you this convenience, the appliance constantly uses small amounts of power. Many appliances can waste power in standby mode all day and all night.
By switching appliances off at the wall when you’re not using them, you’ll be surprised how much energy you save. Over time it can make a big difference to your power bill, and the environment.
Appliance standby guide
The list below shows the typical home appliances that use standby power. It’s incredible to think that the average home wastes about 10% of its total energy use on standby power.
These figures show the average percentage of total standby power and watts used by each appliance.
|Product||% of total standby power||Watts|
|Computer drives, routers, hubs||2.3%||2.1|
|Cordless phone equipment||4.0%||3.7|
|Electric space heaters||0.1%||0.1|
|External power supplies||1.1%||0.1|
|Digital set-top boxes||2.0%||1.9|
|Gas space heaters||1.4%||1.3|
|Instantaneous gas water heaters||1.1%||1.0|
CFL vs incandescent globes
If you’re still not convinced, take a look at these comparisons:
- CFLs produce far less heat than traditional globes and create the same amount of light using nearly a third of the energy
- CFLs last eight to ten times longer
- CFLs cost more to buy but can pay for themselves in lower energy bills
- Changing to CFLs can cut your lighting costs by 66 per cent
- CFLs produce less greenhouse gas emissions because they use less energy
- Less energy use means lower energy bills — the average home can save more than you think every year by switching to CFLs
- CFLs help you save money, and help save the environment.
|Room Number and size||Incandescent globes||Energy saving globes||Potential savings per year (to be confirmed)|
Don’t throw your used CFLs in the bin — you can help the environment by taking part in your local Recycling Project. Instead of wasting away in landfill, 100% every CFL you recycle finds a new life in such diverse by-products as glass wool for insulation, dental amalgam and fertiliser.
Maitreya encourages households to recycle compact fluorescent light globes (CFLs) rather than disposing of them in general waste.
CFLs offer the benefits of using up to 80% less power than standard globes so they can save you money and considerably reduce greenhouse gas emissions. CFLs contain a very small amount of mercury because it is an essential part of their operation. It is preferable that products containing mercury do not go into landfill. It is important, therefore, to encourage the recycling of these globes.
- Recycled globes are transformed into by-products.
- Glass is recycled into glass wool used to insulate homes.
- Aluminium is recycled into cast products.
- Mercury is distilled from separated powders and re-used in the manufacture of dental amalgam.
- Phosphor powder is used in the manufacture of fertiliser products being sold into India’s agriculture industry.