Your Atlanta Home’s Biggest Energy Consumption Culprits
Every month you pay your energy bill, but have you ever thought about where it all goes? What are your home’s biggest energy consumption culprits? What eats up the energy the most?
The answer may just surprise you. Of course, there are a few obvious candidates – your refrigerator and your air conditioner. But consider these power-hungry devices as well. It may change the way you consume energy in your home.
But it’s the middle of the summer, you say. Yet your furnace fan is on a lot, even in the summer thanks to your air conditioner, and it’s a very high energy user. Studies show that these fans are among many household’s biggest energy consumers, using as much as 10 percent of the average home’s total electricity use. That means this is one of your prime candidates for upgrading to more efficient models. Energy efficient motors can cut this daunting number by up to 60 percent or more. Furnaces have come a long way in the past ten years and variable speed is the way to reduce the power consumption.
Yep, you probably have them all over your home. We use rechargeable battery power everywhere. The US Department of Energy estimates that around 800 million rechargeable devices are sold in the US each year. But few of us think about how much energy these battery chargers really are. Have you ever bought a phone or a tablet and wondered how much power it takes to recharge? Of course not. And that means it’s an area ripe for opportunity.
We leave certain appliances plugged in all the time. While it’s necessary for things like your refrigerator, how about your microwave oven? Estimates show the microwave is used only about 70 hours a year. That means up to 99 percent of the time it burns kilowatt hours sitting around and doing nothing but illuminating the clock. Newer microwaves are starting to tackle this problem by upgrading the efficiencies in the power supplies, control boards, and cooking sensors. This new technology can cut one of the biggest energy wasters down and make it more energy efficient in the process.
Game consoles have many power saving features; however, not all game users use them. When you use the on/off button, it puts the console into standby mode, and uses a very low amount of power in that mode. But many users don’t flip the console off, and in some cases leave the television on as well. If you run the console 24/7, it can be costing you an extra hundred dollars a year or more to run it. Newer consoles are now offering an auto power-down features that automatically launches it into power-saving mode. Also keep in mind that if you are streaming movies through your game console rather than through a set-top box, it could be using up to 30 times more energy than if you streamed it through something like Apple TV.
It’s summertime, time to leave the fans on 24/7. And increasingly homeowners are hearing the benefits of reversing the blades of the fan and running it in the winter too. But fans don’t cool the air; they simply move the air to make it more comfortable for the people in the room. Turn them off when you’re not in the room, and you can start saving money immediately.
Not only does your air-conditioner use a lot of power, but if it’s not properly tuned up each season it can cost you up to 30% more power consumption. Air-conditions are air cooled machines that need proper refrigerant levels and cleaned out coils for proper heat removal. Yearly maintenance plans are the way to go.
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