View Full Version : other ways to save power

01-21-2007, 09:50 AM
we bought a new stove last year and a new fridge near the end of the year. We also put in the twistie bulbs in most of the lights we have ( not all but most)
Our power consumption has gone down by 300kw per month! that is allot! The appliances are energy savers, and I think that made a huge difference.
Also, when the time comes, when we need a new washer and dryer, we will be going to front loaders by LG. They use 12-14g of water per load vs the 40-44 that a top loader uses, plus they spin so fast at the end, it takes LESS time to dry the clothes (saves energy again)...Also they will dry faster on the line. ( also as a side bonus, with no agitator in the middle, it is easier on your clothes so they will look better longer)
Those few things can help save power (and money) in the long run.;)

01-21-2007, 10:36 AM
The tips are much needed and appreciated puppyluv :)


01-21-2007, 11:26 AM
We replaced our old heaters. And replaced all windows and doors. That helped. As she said, we also replaced the light bulbs, fridge and stove. I'm not sure how energy effecient they are but our power has gone down every year for the passed 3 years.
NB Power has a page with power saving tips: http://www.nbpower.com/en/commitment/savings/information/tips/tips.aspx

Appliance Use Tips

The seal in your refrigerator should be checked especially on older refrigerators and freezers. You can check the seal on your refrigerator door by placing a thin piece of paper between the seal and the door frame, closing the door and trying to pull the paper out. If the paper is not held snugly in place, you should adjust the door or replace the seal. Be sure to check several places around the door.

Avoid having the refrigerator door open more than necessary, so locate what you want quickly. It takes only a few seconds for cold air inside to spill out into the room.
Small cooking appliances are generally more efficient than a range. Slow cookers can use up to 80% less energy than would be required to cook the same food on the range.
Cooling food before you place it in your refrigerator or freezer means the appliance does not have to work as hard.
By cooking foods together that require the same oven temperature you'll make full use of a high energy user. Place dishes so they do not touch each other or the oven walls.
A dishwasher uses most of its electricity in the drying, not the washing cycle. Use a rinse agent to reduce spotting on air-dried dishes and, if you have one, use the energy-saving or power-saving cycle.
The lower the wattage, the less electricity an appliance uses. A toaster oven at 1500 watts is a more efficient alternative than a conventional oven at 3200 watts. A microwave oven uses less than half the energy of a conventional oven because almost all the energy is absorbed by the food.
Matching pot size to range element will ensure maximum heat transfer. Using tight fitting lids means that heat and moisture are retained, shortening cooking time. Flat-bottomed pans are best because they transfer and conduct heat evenly allowing faster cooking and better browning.
By thawing meat in the refrigerator the heat absorbed by the defrosting food helps keep the refrigerator cool and save energy.
When purchasing new appliances, buy the most energy efficient, as noted on the Energuide label.

Home Heating Tips

Fireplaces can be major energy wasters. Glass doors are more effective than a mesh firescreen for reducing the heat loss after the fire has gone out. If you do not use your fireplace, however, you can close off the unused chimney with any material (plywood, hardboard, styrofoam, etc.) that will block airflow. Dampers should be kept closed on fireplaces when they are not in use.
In order to maintain the efficiency of your heating system it is important to remove the dust and dirt that accumulates on the metal fins. This will ensure an unrestricted airflow.
A sheet of plastic improves the insulation value of windows and can help eliminate window condensation problems. This type of plastic sheet is taped to the window frame and "shrunk wrapped" with a hair dryer.
Insulated drapes drawn over windows at night can save energy because they provide another layer of insulation. Take care though, as condensation can build up between the drapes and the window and extra ventilation may be required. Also, drapes kept open when the sun shines in during the day make effective use of the sun during the day. Drapes do keep some heat out in summer, but external awnings or roof overhangs do an even better job.
By closing the doors to rooms not being used and turning the thermostat back slightly in those rooms, you'll save energy. During extremely cold weather, however, it is important to heat unoccupied rooms slightly to prevent condensation, mold and mildew.
If you have a mercury thermostat, make sure your thermostat is level, so you get a true reading when turning the heat up or down. Consider using timers for your thermostats so they can be set to come on an hour before waking.
Basements account for 20-35% of total heat loss. Basement walls should be insulated to at least R-12. Be sure to correct any problems such as water dampness before you insulate.

Use Your Hot Water More Efficiently

Leaky faucets waste water and if the drip is hot water, energy is wasted as well. One drip per second can amount to a loss of almost 200 gallons per month and cost you $30 to $40 dollars a year in energy loses.
In colder months after bathing, leave the hot water sitting in the tub instead of immediately pulling the plug. This way the heat from the water is released into the air. After an hour or so, when the water has reached room temperature the plug can be pulled. Take care, however, that children don't fall into an unsupervised tub.
Use cold water instead of hot to soak pots and dishes that need scouring.
Wash your clothes in cold water - if you presently do your laundry in warm water and rinse in cold, switching to cold will save you energy and money. The savings are even greater if you use hot and switch to cold. Some detergents are designed specifically for cold water washing. Visit http://www.switchtocold.com/ to learn more about the "Switch To Cold" program - an initiative by the Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance.

Lighting Tips

Clean fixtures, bulbs and lamp parts at least once a year as dust and dirt accumulation lowers efficiency and light levels. When cleaning, unplug the fixture or turn the power off.
Use lower wattage bulbs particularly in areas that don't require too much light, such as hallways and storage areas. If you do need bright light, a single 100 watt bulb will give the same amount of light as two 60 watt bulbs, while using less energy.
Rather than leaving lights on all day, a timer can be set to turn lights on at dusk and off at midnight. This also contributes to house security.
Lighting is needed for safety and security outdoors but isn't necessary when no one is around. A motion sensor will switch lights on when needed for the returning family, and saves energy because lights are only on when needed.
Fluorescent lights last 18 to 20 times longer than incandescent bulbs and provide the same amount of light at lower operating costs. Consider replacing regular fluorescent lamps with the new energy-efficient variety. A standard four-foot fluorescent tube uses 40 watts, while the energy-efficient variety uses 34 or 32 watts. Higher purchase prices and installation costs are offset by lower operating costs.
Dimmers provide energy savings and add diversity to your lighting options by allowing you to vary the light level in the room to match the need. Only incandescent lights, however, should be on dimmer switches.
Night lights are an efficient alternative to leaving lights on in areas which are unoccupied.

01-21-2007, 11:28 AM
And here's information on appliance energy consumption: http://www.nbpower.com/en/commitment/savings/information/appliances/appliances.aspx


NB Power receives many inquiries from customers on the electricity requirements of household appliances. This information will help you understand the electricity consumption of your appliances and with our rate information, it will also help you understand electricity costs.

The amount of electricity you use is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh). A kilowatt hour is the equivalent of 1000 watts of electricity used in one hour. You tend to use different amounts of electricity from one day to the next. Depending on the size of your family, appliance use and other living habits, your electrical consumption will vary.

The information below provides a general breakdown of energy usage in an average home.

Home Heating 60%
Water Heating 20%
Major appliances and lighting 20%

This chart lists the most common household appliances, their typical load in watts and their estimated average kWh/month. For example, a colour television used extensively may consume 75 kWh/month. The associated cost would be 75 kWh/month multiplied by the current residential rate.

Appliance Wattage Average kWh/Month $1 of Electrity Gets You...
Air Cleaner (Room Type) 40 10-30 330 hours of clean air
Air Cleaner (Furnace Type) 20 10-15
Air Conditioner (Room, 6000 BTU/h.) 750 0.75 kWh/h
Air Conditioner (Room, 9000 BTU/h.) 1,050 1.05 kWh/h
Blanket (Double) 180 10 13 cozy nights
Broiler 1,400 10
Car Block Heater 500 0.50 kWh/h
Car Interior Heater 750 0.75 kWh/h
Ceiling Fan 60 1-20 293 hours of circulation
Clothes Dryer 4,800 50-125 4 Loads
Clothes Washer (Automatic, excluding water) 500 5-20 Cold - 26 Loads
Warm - 6 Loads
Coffee Maker 900 4-8 432 cups of coffee
Computer (Monitor and Tower) 100 10-40 220 hours of interactive fun
Deep-fat Fryer 1,500 8 128 servings of french fries
De-humidifier 350 75
Dishwasher (excluding water) 1,300 10-30 Hot Water - 7 extra hours to spend with your family
Food Freezer (15 cu. ft.) 335 100
Food Freezer (frost free 15 cu. ft) 425 130
Fry Pan 1,150 10-20
Furnace Fan Motor (oil/gas - intermittent) 350 55-145
Furnace Fan Motor (oil/gas - continuous) 350 250
Furnace Oil Burner 260 50
Grill (sandwich) 1,160 4 115 grill cheese sandwiches
Hair Dryer (portable) 1000 4-6 5 min/day - 158 days of style
Heater (portable) 1,000 1 kWh/h
Heater (portable) 1,500 1.5 kWh/h
Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV) 130 94
Iron 1,000 10-15 156 ironed shirts
Kettle 1,500 10-15 565 cups of tea
Lawn Mower 1,500 3-6
- Ceiling Fixture (single lamp) 60 1-12 220 hours of light
- Ceiling Fixture (3 lamps) 180 2-35
- Compact Fluorescent (60 watt equivalent) 18 3-4
- Fluorescent Fixture (2 tube, 4 ft.) 100 1-20 144 hours of light
Tri-light 100 1-20
Microwave Oven 1,000 15-30 260 bags of popcorn
Range 12,000 50-90 6 hours of gourmet meals
Range (self-cleaning cycle only) 3,200 2-5 6 hours of gourmet meals
Refrigerator/Freezer (12 cu. ft) 300 50-100 12.5 cu.ft - 5 1/2 chilling days
Refrigerator/Freezer (frost free 17 cu. ft) 500 100-150
Stereo (solid state) 30 6 441 hours of music
Television (colour) 200 10-75 66 hours of prime time TV
Toaster 1,150 2-4 460 slices of toast
Vacuum Cleaner (central) 1,600 5-10 16 hours
Vacuum Cleaner (portable) 800 2-4
Video Cassette Recorder/Player 40 1-8 110 movies
Water Bed Heater 400 50-120
Water Heater (40 gallon) 3,000 400
Water Pump (3/4 HP) 0.56 kWh/h
Water Pump (1 HP) 0.75 kWh/h

01-21-2007, 05:20 PM
I had a tendency to fall asleep with my overhead light on in my bedroom, and leave it on for 8 hours, so I bought a "tri-lite" style floor lamp from Staples that uses 4 large Christmas tree sized bulbs, and allows you to select to use 1, 2, or 4 of the bendable arms. The flexible arms also allow me to point the light where I want it, down for reading, or up for getting dressed or just watching TV. To keep myself from using all 4 by mistake, I removed two of the bulbs. So now when I fall asleep with the light on, I am burning one or two Christmas bulbs instead of 2 60 watt bulbs. It seemed to lower our power bill for the summer by a few dollars.
Fortunately, it came with the option of 4 coloured or 4 white shades, I am using the white of course :-).
We bought a toaster oven for the small jobs-why heat a large oven to cook a single chicken breast for example. We also are gradually phasing in using nothing but the energy saver bulbs in the whole house, as the regular bulbs burn out. We have SJ energy to thank for that, the three free bulbs were just what we needed to completely finish changing over our lights to low energy ones. Our living room light is also on a timer, it is set to snap off at about 1:30 am if we forget or fall asleep on the couch.