We are always looking for ways to reduce our energy consumption, but as we add more and more devices and gadgets to our homes it is hard to keep up! There are many ways to be more energy efficient that we all typically know by now: taking shorter showers, washing clothes in cold water and switching to energy-efficient lighting are the obvious ones.
There are still some common mistakes people are make in an effort to save energy and lower their bill:
1. Forgetting it’s the building that matters most
Good insulation, blocking off gaps in your windows and doors, carpeting and even upgrading to double glazing all contribute to making a much more energy efficient home, instead of using more energy on heating and cooling.
2. Buying something just because it says it’s ‘eco friendly’
Efficiency is the relationship between what you get out and what you put in. So before you immediately purchase all new appliances, think of how you use them before jumping in.
3. Turning on as few lights as possible
In the old days we were told to turn lights off as we leave a room, but lighting is the smallest portion of your energy bill. Modern light bulbs use about 6c per hour. Your air conditioner, washing machine and hot water system should be much more of a focus!
4. Turning off with just a remote
Standby power is more likely to be a problem with the TV accessories you have plugged in, like set-top boxes, DVDs, modems, entertainment systems and stereos. When switched off by remote, most of these appliances use just as much electricity off as they do on! Pull the plug if you really want to turn them off.
5. Not thinking solar / gas
If you can get it at your home, gas and solar options are great ways to lower your overall energy costs. Although the upfront costs are often a barrier, if you can afford the change the long-term savings are clear.