Everyone would like to cut down on their electricity bill, but there are more effective ways to do this than just turning off all the lights and unplugging your electronic devices. If you really want to control your energy usage, it’s important to first understand which appliances use the most power. Keep reading to learn the top electricity drainers in your home, and remember that you can always contact our professional electricians at Roby Services for all of your essential electrical service needs.
The Biggest Energy Users In American Households
- Heating & Cooling Equipment: In almost all average homes, the biggest energy-drainers are HVAC systems. Your heating and cooling equipment consumes roughly 47% of all the power generated by your electrical system—this is why all HVAC dealers make such a big deal about their products being energy-efficient. While you should look for the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, or AFUE ratings when purchasing new HVAC equipment, there are also small changes you can make in your heating and cooling habits if you really want to reduce your utility costs. For instance, it is more efficient to run your air conditioner at a lower temperature when you are not home in the summer, as your AC unit has to work twice as hard when you crank it as low as possible on a hot day. Conversely, you should never leave your heater running longer than necessary during the winter, and make sure heating and cooling systems are well-maintained for optimum performance.
- Water Heaters: The average water heater accounts for approximately 14% of most homes’ energy usage. While this may not seem like a lot in comparison to your HVAC system, water heater costs can still add up—especially during the wintertime, when your water heater has to work harder to provide you with the warm water you need. Much like your heating system or air conditioner, your water heater is an essential piece of comfort equipment, so there is no way to extricate it from your energy costs entirely. However, you may be able to save some money on energy costs if you take shorter, less frequent showers.
- Washers & Dryers: A slight bump down from your water heater, your washer and dryer combo probably takes up around 13% of your electrical system’s energy. This percentage can be more or less depending on how big your household is, though there are some good rules of thumb to follow if you want to reduce washer and dryer usage overall. Try not to run your washer and dryer for smaller loads, and to wait longer between cycles. Obviously, you don’t want to go walking around in dirty, smelly clothes. That said, if you find yourself running your washer for a single item of clothing, consider holding off on that wash until it is really necessary. We understand that if you’ve lived in an apartment and suddenly have your own washer and dryer, the temptation to do laundry all the time is real. But at the end of the day, there’s no need to waste energy when you don’t have to.
- Lighting: Another small tick down here, your lights probably take up 12% of your total energy costs. While you can just hang out in the dark all the time if you want to save a few bucks on electricity, a better way to cut down lighting costs is to use LED lightbulbs. LED lightbulbs use 80% less energy than traditional halogen bulbs and are compatible with almost all modern light fixtures. So if you are not currently using LED light bulbs in your home, there is really no reason not to make the switch.