January is a time of year when we’re all feeling the pinch. Unfortunately it’s also usually one of the coldest times of the year, which means we’re all the more likely to build up big energy bills.
This year the Energy Savings Trust had teamed up with Citizens advice to help, and we think this could help all of us to save energy and carbon, and keep those bills down.
Saving energy is one of those things that just makes sense. It saves us money and it saves the planet from greenhouse emissions.
We often hear that doing something costs money or carbon, but how much? What is the real impact of our actions?
We’ve broken down some of the big things we can all do to save energy and put them into real terms, so we can see what a big impact small actions can have.
Using a bowl rather than a running tap to wash up saves about £25 per year in energy bills. A running tap uses about 6 litres of water per minutes. That means washing up for 20 minutes every day, uses a whopping 910 litres of water! Alternatively, a washing up bowl has a capacity of about 10 litres. Even with 10 minutes of rinsing time over the week, washing up with a bowl could still cut your water usage by 85%!
Energy saving lightbulbs are another great investment. One LED light gives off about 5 times more light per unit of energy than a traditional incandescent lightbulb. Additionally, for every hour you run an incandescent bulb, you could run an LED for about 8.5 hours. Both of these things make LED lights a big win for the planet and all of our pockets! There is a common urban myth that turning a light off briefly doesn’t saving anything due to the energy required to turn it on and off, but this has been disproven. Switching off a light even just for a few seconds saves far more energy than it takes for the light to start up again.
Switching things off rather than to standby can save as much as £150 per year. This is because an overwhelming majority of electrical goods are built not to switch off entirely, but to standby. Standby lets gadgets start up more quickly, but it also means they are constantly using power. Although each individual piece of equipment might not use a lot, they all add up to a staggering amount of energy, all for doing nothing! Good examples of things to be careful of are mobile phone chargers and computer monitors. A mobile phone charger plugged into a fully charged phone uses 66% as much energy as one which is actually charging a phone. Meanwhile a monitor uses almost a fifth as much energy in standby as it does in use.
Here is a quick list of other things we can all do to save energy at home and at work;