Although electricity is relatively cheaper in the U.S vis-à-vis other MEDCs (MEDC- More Economically Developed Country), the average American allocates a considerable amount of their monthly budget to servicing their utility bill. The following are easy energy saving tips that may help you save dollar bills on utilities.
- Use natural light instead of light bulbs. Natural lighting is free and is known to be more stimulating than artificial lighting. Whenever possible, save electrical lights for when they are absolutely necessary.
- Use smart power strips that reduce phantom loads or unplug devices when not in use. Phantom loads are any appliances that use electricity when turned off but left plugged in to a power outlet. The combined load for all home appliances can add a considerable amount to your electricity bill.
- Apply sleep settings to all eligible appliances. Most home appliances have a built-in sleep setting that “hibernates” the appliance/device after a certain amount of inactivity. Make sure you apply these settings for all devices (particularly screened ones) to avoid wasting valuable power.
- Unplug unnecessary electronic appliances and devices. Most households have redundant appliances that serve the same function and yet are always plugged in simultaneously (DVD players and cable receivers for example). Do a quick audit of your home and unplug all unnecessary appliances.
- Buy energy efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) or Compact Fluorescent (CFL) light bulbs. LEDs and energy efficient lightbulbs can use up to 70% less energy than conventional incandescent lightbulbs, whilst achieving the same lighting effect. Although they are slightly more expensive to purchase, LEDs or CFLs save more money in the long run.
- Buy energy saving appliances and electronics that are Energy Star certified. Energy Star (or similar) certified products use significantly less electricity and are more efficient than non-certified products. Find more information about certified products at https://www.energystar.gov/ or http://www.epeat.net/
Written by Adil Nyambasha, Class of 2018.