Simple Energy Saving Solutions

  • Compact fluorescent lamps These use only about 20% as much electricity to produce the same amount of light as ordinary incandescent lights. They are expensive, so they are not economical if they are fitted in rooms where the lights are only switched on for short periods. If the power supply quality is poor (frequent blackouts, unstable voltage etc) they may not work as well.
  • Luminaire selection and maintenance The luminaire is the name given to the whole structure that a light bulb is fitted in. Some luminaires are better at directing more light to where it is needed. All luminaires are more efficient if they are kept clean.
  • Task lighting Electricity consumption in homes and offices can be reduced by using individual task lights (for example, desk lamps) to provide bright light only where it is actually needed.
  • Water-saving taps and shower heads These are simple and cheap attachments which mix air with the flow of hot water. The tap / shower head works just as well as before, but only requires about half as much hot water. Less hot water down the drain means less energy wasted.
  • Behaviour changes Surprisingly large amounts of energy can be saved just by changing behavious. Obvious examples are switching off lights that are not needed, not leaving a hot tap running unnecessarily, boiling only as much water in the kettle as you need.
  • Boiler thermostats Large amounts of heat will be wasted if a boiler is heating water to an unnecessarily high temperature. Fitting a thermostat to the boiler can prevent this.
  • Awnings These are canvas shades which are stretched above the outside of windows in summer to prevent direct sun from entering the window, helping to reduce overheating of buildings in summer. This will not actually save energy unless the building is air-conditioned, but it will improve comfort.
  • Planting trees as a windbreak A row of trees can prevent the wind from blowing directly on a building, so reducing the heat loss.
    More information: [Saving Energy By Planting Trees->saving-energy-by-planting-trees]
  • Conservatories These are structures made from glass, a bit like a greenhouse, but built against the south wall of a house. They trap the heat of the sun and so reduce the amount of heat lost during winter.
  • Greening of walls A layer of climbing plants growing over a wall traps a layer of air around the building and acts as an insulating blanket.
  • Plugging leaks in hot air ducts In some buildings, the heating system works by heating up air in a central heating plant. The hot air is then blown through a system of ducts into the rooms. If these ducts have leaks, then hot air is being wasted.
  • Gaskets behind electrical fittings Some buildings are constructed with a cavity between the main wall and an interior layer of cladding. Cold air can leak into a room through the small gaps around light switches and electrical sockets. The fitting of rubber gaskets behind electrical fittings can reduce this.
  • Regulation / control of wood-stoves If the flow of air to a wood-stove is not correctly regulated, the wood burns too rapidly and a lot of heat is wasted up the chimney. Some cheap and simple wood-stoves do not allow the air-flow to be regulated, so they would need to be modified. It’s important to ensure that the person responsible for operating wood-stoves is trained to operate them both efficiently and safely.
  • Caulking of leaks Caulk is a general term for any soft material that is used to fill cracks permanently. Many different materials can be used, with different costs, different lifetimes and different environmental qualities.
  • Powering off electrical appliances (rather than leaving on standby) Many newer electrical appliances (particularly televisions) have a ‘standby’ mode, where although they are not operating, they are still consuming electricity. A lot of power can be saved by not leaving televisions on standby for long periods.

9 thoughts on “Simple Energy Saving Solutions”

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