How to Reduce Household Energy
Almost everything you do requires energy — but there are steps you can take to keep your consumption down in your home.
It’s weird to think about but nearly everything you do and everything you use in the home contributes to energy consumption. When you do the laundry, you’re using energy. When the lights are on, you’re using energy. Even if you’re doing something as passive as charging your phone, you are still using energy.
Wait, but I’m only consuming energy if I am using something with a plug, right? Not necessarily. When you shower, you’re not just using up water; you’re also consuming energy. Of course, there are some really easy fixes for most kinds of energy consumption. Not only are there simple ways to reduce your energy consumption, but there are also things you can do to make it more tolerable. Keep reading for more!
Unplug Devices You’re Not Using
Sure, you’ve heard this one before, but it goes for more than just your unused cell phone charger. It goes for everything! Not watching TV? Unplug. Not using the dryer? Unplug. It’s a big ask and super inconvenient, but it also has a big payoff. You will see a drastic change on your electric bill — that’s a guarantee.
Turn Off the Lights
Chances are you’ve heard this one, too, but we reiterate it here again because it’s a big one. Not only will you see a big change on your electric bill, but you might also see a change in your health.
Say what?! Well, we know (because science!) that artificial lights and blue lights affect our brains and in turn, can affect our sleeping patterns. If we rely on natural light, we are resetting our Circadian Rhythm, therefore making it easier for our bodies to fall asleep (and stay asleep) naturally. Oh, and did we mention turning off lights will also lower your energy consumption?
Take a Four-Minute Shower
We get it, we get it. Showers are sometimes the one true moment of tranquility that we have throughout our doors and there’s nothing more tempting than to crank up the temperature and let the water do its thing… for 30 minutes or so. But it’s just not good for the environment! By taking shorter showers, you’ll be conserving energy and resources. In fact, the recommended sustainable time for a shower is 4 minutes. That’s not even the full “Bohemian Rhapsody,” but it will do wonders for the planet.
Use a Shower Bucket
Speaking of showers, another sustainable thing you can do while getting clean is use a shower bucket. You basically just put a bucket in your shower and while you scrub-a-dub, the bucket will collect all the leftover water. You can then repurpose this water by using it to flush your toilet or watering the plants.
It doesn’t have to be a shower bucket, either; if you have a leaky tap, the perfect solution is to let a bucket fill with the water from the leaking tap. Then you can use it to water plants or rinse the dishes. It’s called greywater. No waste here!
If a shower or tap bucket isn’t your thing, maybe an outdoor rainwater bucket is better suited to you. Rainwater is perhaps one of the best kinds of water there is, at least for plants. By collecting it, you’ll be saving a ton of energy. Go a step further from the bucket and contact your local water authority about how to install a rainwater tank.
Now that we have top-of-the-line washer and dryers, hanging clothes to dry is a thing of the past. But it just may be that our parents were onto something when they did that. Hang-drying clothes saves 400kg of energy annually. Only run your dryer if you absolutely have to.
Stock Up on Blankets
Linus from The Peanuts was onto something. Never underestimate the power of a blanket, as it can help you as you deal with the side effects of conserving energy. In order to conserve energy, keep your home’s temperature on the lower end and instead of turning it up when you’re cold, reach for a blanket instead. By bulking up your fall and winter wardrobe, or by simply having blankets around the house, you can keep the heat at a certain level, while fighting off the chill comfortably.