What uses the most energy in your home
When it comes to powering the everyday appliances that your household uses, do you know where your money goes? Which appliances use the most energy in your home? Before we can answer that question, we need to look at how energy usage is measured.
What is a kilowatt hour?
A kilowatt hour (kWh) is a measure of how much energy you’re using. If energy is used at a constant rate – power – over a period of time, the total energy in kilowatt hours is equal to the power in kilowatts multiplied by the time in hours.
Ok, what? A kWh is simply a unit of measurement that equals the amount of energy you would use if you kept a 1,000watt appliance running for an hour: So, if you switched on a 100watt light bulb, it would take 10 hours to burn up 1 kWh of energy. Or a 2,000watt appliance would use 1 kWh in just half an hour.
If you’re a visual person, it might help to look at it like this
One Kilowatt hour will get you about:
Typical electricity usage per appliance for an hour
Using your appliances effectively can lower the risk of load shedding.
We know all about the usual suspects with the biggest energy demands in the home – geysers, pool pumps, washing machines and air conditioning units usually take most of the blame for a high power bill. However, there are other appliances that are often overlooked despite their high power demand. It’s important to know which appliances consume more electricity than others in order to optimise their usage. Just by changing how and when we use these appliances, it is possible to save electricity and money.
Let’s take a look at the line-up of undercover power-hungry home appliances
Surprise! The humble electrical kettle is one of the most expensive appliances to run. In fact, your kettle can cost you more than running your washing machine or microwave. So if you’re a tea lover or you need a lot of hot water for cooking you could be unknowingly pushing your electricity consumption higher than necessary.
TOP TIP: Only fill the kettle to match the number of mugs you plan to use. If you do fill the kettle all the way, make it to fill a flask and the next time you need a caffeine fix you won’t have to wait for the kettle to boil!
Gadgetry and technology:
Every gadget has a charger, and with most households having 2 – 3 devices per person, that adds up to a lot of chargers. For convenience, most homes have chargers plugged in everywhere from the bedrooms to the kitchen, but this comes at a cost. Leaving chargers plugged in all over the show is a waste of electricity – more so than you might think. Don’t believe it? Touch the charger. If it’s not charging anything and it’s warm, that’s wasted electricity.
If it’s got an element, it uses a lot of electricity – no shocker there. But what might surprise you is that the way you use your oven makes a difference in how it consumes electricity. Got a habit of opening the oven door to check on your roast chicken because you’re impatient for it to be done? Resist that habit because each time you open the door, your oven loses 20% of its accumulated heat. This means it needs to use more electricity to reach the required temperature all over again. Another way to reduce your oven’s electricity consumption is to turn it off before the end of the cooking time, using the residual heat to finish the job. Just don’t open the oven door after you’ve shut it off until you are sure your roast is done!
TV’s these days generally have a stand-by mode. This puts your TV to sleep without fully powering off, so the next time you want to use it, it switches right on without needing to power up. While the exact amount of power that your TV set uses will vary slightly depending on make and model, it will still use power. When you’re done watching, switch it off completely.
TOP TIP: If you’re not using it, it does not need to be on.
It’s a simple rule, but it’s one that can help you switch to a saving mindset. Switch off lights as you exit the room. Power down printers, gaming consoles and unplug chargers. In fact, you could unplug everything if you’re not using it. Not only will this cut down on electricity consumption, it can help protect your appliances from power surges associated with load shedding.
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