Reduce Your Home's Monthly Energy Bill With These 7 Tips
Households in Singapore typically account for almost 1/6 of the country’s total electricity consumption. Saving energy at home not only contributes to saving the environment, it also helps you save significant amount of money! On top of once-off events such as choosing energy efficient appliances, here are some energy-saving habits that are extremely easy to cultivate.
1. AIR-CONDITIONER: Clean Your Filters Every Month
If you have not already known, there are many ways you can help reduce the load on your air-conditioner. Keep doors and windows closed and curtains drawn increase the operating efficiency on the air-conditioner and allow it to expend less energy to keep the room cool. Additionally, a temperature of 25⁰C is more than sufficient for most homes. For every degree lower, you consume more electricity and may pay approximately $25 more a year.
More importantly, clean your filters every month and your aircon need not work even harder to produce cool, clean air.
2. FAN: Use A Fan To Cool The Room
Most of us use the air-conditioner out of habit rather than out of necessity. The next time you wish to turn on the air-conditioner, remember that for every hour, a typical air-conditioner unit uses 20 times more energy than a ceiling fan—imagine the amount cost savings possible!
Opt for fans with energy-saving motors that promote healthy air circulation, and and are able to produce cool air without loud whirring noises.
3. APPLIANCES: Turn Off When Not In Use
Did you know that an appliance or electronic device can continue to consume energy even when it is not actually turned on? Household appliances such as TVs, routers and computers continue to use energy until you switch them off at the wall socket. Switching off the wall socket can potentially cut the amount of energy consumed at home by 10%!
4. REFRIGERATOR: Avoid Overloading It
Size does matter! As a general rule, bigger refrigerators consume more electricity, and refrigerators are one of the top 5 most energy-hungry appliances in our homes. Go for the size you need.
If you have an old refrigerator, regularly check the seal at the door to ensure it is in good condition, otherwise, the cool air will escape. There should also be good circulation between food so avoid overloading the freezer.
Once in a while, defrosting your freezer can help to conserve energy as it removes the frost build-up. The latter affects how hard the motor has to work to cool your food.
5. WASHING MACHINE - Wash On Full Load
There appears to be a misconception that underloading the washing machine reduces the energy expended each time you use the machine. However, it is important to realise that washing one large load at a higher setting actually consumes lesser energy than washing two loads on a low or medium setting.
Furthermore, 90% of the energy consumed by a washing machine actually goes into heating the water so unless absolutely necessary, stick to 30 degrees rather than higher temperatures.
6. PC/LAPTOP: 'Hibernate' Mode Instead of Screensaver
Contrary to what its name suggests, screensaver wastes rather than saves energy. Originally developed to save older monitors from damage, screensavers today serve little purpose other than offer users the ability to personalise their computers. For the purpose of saving energy (and money), allow your computer to “hibernate”, put it in sleep mode or switch it off instead.
7. STOVE - Use Pan Of The Right Size
Use a small pan if your cooker has a small cooking ring, and a large pan on a large cooking ring. In fact, it has been estimated that using a 6-inch pan on an 8-inch burner wastes approximately 40% of the heat produced by the burner on an electric cooktop—the pan of the right size can’t be that far away, use the right pan when cooking and stand to benefit from not only energy and cost savings, but also food that cooks faster!
Master these energy-saving habits in these seven areas and you are all set to run an energy-efficient home of your own!
This article was done in collaboration with 99.co, Singapore's fastest growing property portal.