Want to know how to control energy draining appliances – and save money on your energy bills?
Certain electrical appliances consume a lot of power and run for long periods. This equipment is responsible for the lion´s share of domestic energy consumption and strains the household budget.
Even though most modern homes are dependent on their continued use of such energy draining appliances, it is possible to optimize their use and control electricity costs.
Industrial equipment typically consumes a lot of power. It is natural to think that a nation’s energy usage reflects such industrial consumption.
What might come as a surprise is that domestic energy usage is heavy and accounts for over 30% of overall energy demands of developed countries. Heating and cooling appliances drain the most energy and are responsible for high domestic electricity bills.
The quantity of energy that is drawn by the use of an appliance over a duration of time is calculated by multiplying the rating in watts by the number of hours it has been running. This is only a rough estimate because the rate at which any appliance uses power will vary over the period depending on usage conditions.
As a rule of thumb computation, an appliance with a rating of 500 watts running for 2 hours will consume 1000 watt-hours of energy (also called 1 kWh).
Those appliances which are most energy hungry have a higher watt rating and are often left running for many hours.
Technological improvements have helped enhance the efficiency of most modern electrical equipment. That’s a good reason to have older models replaced by more efficient newer ones. By upgrading to an energy-efficient version of high consumption equipment, you will bring down your home energy usage and consequently pay less on energy bills.
Which are the most energy draining appliances?
Three categories of electrical equipment are usually guilty of consuming the highest amount of power.
All have high watt ratings and run for prolonged periods. They include:
1. Appliances with compressors such as air-conditioners, fridges and freezers.
2. Appliances with heater elements like water heaters, radiant warmers and electric grills.
3. Appliances with heavy duty motors including water pumps, vacuum cleaners and desk top grinders or blenders.
There are some simple things you can do to bring down energy consumption by these devices and lower your energy bills.
Refrigerators and freezers:
Even though most homes run their fridge or freezer non-stop through the day and night, the greatest energy consumption comes during the short periods when the compressors work. That’s why they are among household energy draining appliances.
How much power is drawn by your fridge will depend on the size of the equipment, design elements, energy efficiency rating and other factors related to how you use it. Newer models are considerably more efficient at conserving energy than older ones from a few decades back.
You can improve the energy efficiency of your refrigerator and freezer by:
1. Replacing older models with better, new versions with high Energy Star ratings.
2. Spending a little more for energy efficient brands and models rather than choosing the cheapest solution.
3. Having equipment with separate doors for the fridge and freezer chamber, ideally with separate temperature regulating controls, can reduce energy consumption.
4. Setting the thermostat at the ideal temperature for the season and the contents of the fridge. If your fridge does not have an automatic defrosting feature, be sure to remove the ice periodically to prevent it building up and reducing the efficiency.
5. Ensure correct sealing of doors and minimize the opening and closing of the fridge or freezer doors to reduce energy demand.
Hot water heaters are another of the energy draining appliances that are used more frequently in winter, and you can improve their efficiency in these ways:
1. Replace old heaters with newer efficient models. Tankless heaters are better than standard models.
2. Optimize the thermostat setting to prevent wasteful heating.
3. Drain water out of the heater every 2 or 3 months to prevent sediment and sludge clogging the pipes and heating coil.
4. Solar water heating systems can avoid the need for electricity or gas for heating the water.
5. Check the insulation of your heater and pipes to minimize heat loss.