How we get there
Be mindful of parasitic loads, buy better appliances, and install feedback systems that tell us what things consume. A simple solution to parasitic loads is to use a surge protector strip to group related loads onto a single switch. Usually a single strip will work for a home office (computer, printer, router, modem, monitor) or entertainment center (TV, VCR, DVD, speakers, video game consoles etc). This allows a single action to cut power to the entire area. Of course, you need to remember to actually turn off this power strip when you aren't using the devices attached to it.
These small changes will add up and they are something that only you have control over
It's important to be able to account for the energy usage that is reported on your electrical bill every month. The most simple way of doing this is to hook up a watt meter such as a Kill-a-Watt
. These devices are inexpensive and tell you how much energy something is consuming in real time. You can only hook up one device at a time, but if you keep track of how much it consumes turned on and off and figure out how much time it is on, you can work to find your largest loads and replace them. This can help you make informed decisions on how to save energy and Save Money
Do you know how much energy your television is consuming right now? How about your refrigerator? Or that light on in the other room? Feedback systems show you how much energy your house is consuming in real time, ideally down to the level of individual outlets. These systems can have a tremendous impact on how much energy we use, and the monthly power bill. Feedback systems provide information on energy usage and electricity costs in real time, with varying levels of detail. Simple systems hookup to your electrical meter and provide a real-time readout of energy usage, sometimes with a remote readout as well that you can carry through the house. More advanced systems also include real-time energy costs and may be attached to each circuit or each outlet as opposed to the electrical meter. They can cost as little as $150 for a simple device. Studies in the US, Canada, Scandinavia, the Netherlands, and the UK have shown that people who install even the simple devices reduce energy consumption between 5 and 15 percent
These small changes will add up and they are something that only you have control over. Small changes in your behavior or a better decision when purchasing a new appliance can be easy ways to save energy and money if you know where your energy goes. Check out the My Part
section to learn what you can do to do your part in reducing the power consumption of the devices plugged into your outlets.
Yahoo - Home Energy Feedback
Yahoo article about the importance of home energy monitoringClick now to view
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