The Irish Offshore Operators’ Association (IOOA) is encouraging people to conserve power while at home during the Covid-19 crisis. IOOA says that by taking such actions families can ease the burden on thousands of key energy workers and crews which are working to ensure supplies not just for home but also essential services.
Here are some important tips:
To reduce energy consumption in your home, you do not necessarily need to go out and purchase energy efficient products. Energy conservation can be as simple as turning off lights or appliances when you do not need them. You can also use energy-intensive appliances less by performing household tasks manually, such as hang-drying your clothes instead of putting them in the dryer, or washing dishes by hand.
- Replace your light bulbs
Traditional light bulbs consume an excessive amount of electricity and must be replaced more often than their energy efficient alternatives. Halogen incandescent bulbs, compact fluorescent lights (CFLs), and light-emitting diode bulbs (LEDs) use anywhere from 25-80% less electricity and last three to 25 times longer than traditional bulbs. Although energy efficient bulbs are more expensive, their efficient energy use and longer service lives mean that they cost less in the long run.
- Install a smart thermostat
A programmable or smart thermostat can be set to automatically turn off or reduce heating and cooling during the times when you are asleep or away. When you install a programmable thermostat, you eliminate wasteful energy use from heating and cooling.
- Purchase energy efficient appliances
When purchasing an appliance, you should pay attention to two numbers: the initial purchase price and the annual operating cost. Although energy efficient appliances usually have higher purchase prices, their operating costs are 9-25% lower than conventional models.
- Reduce your water heating expenses
Water heating is a major contributor to your total energy consumption. Other than purchasing an energy efficient water heater, there are three methods of reducing your water heating expenses: you can simply use less hot water, turn down the thermostat on your water heater, or insulate your water heater and the first six feet of hot and cold water pipes.
- Seal Draughts
Close doors between rooms that are heated and unheated to keep the heat in.Check windows, keyholes and doors for draughts of cold air and plug them. A chimney balloon will keep the draughts out and the heat in. Close curtains to keep heat in, but open them in the morning to let the heat of the sun in.
- Switch if Off
Turn the heating off when you leave the house or if you go away. Remember, your radiators will continue to heat your home for some time after the heating has been turned off. Switch off all your appliances at night and when you are not home. You should turn off your computer whenever you are not going to use it for more than an hour. Use a power strip which means that at night or when you leave the house, you can easily unplug your devices at once. Turn off lights when you are leaving a room or when you do not need them.
- Cook efficiently
Don’t let the heat escape by covering your pots and pans with a lid. The lid keeps the heat in and reduces condensation in the kitchen. Use the right sized hob for your pan – the closer the match, the less energy you use. Don’t boil full kettles for one cup of tea, but do make sure you have enough water to cover the element. Where possible use a microwave for cooking, and use the toaster rather than the grill.
- Install energy efficient windows
Windows are significant source of energy waste, which can amount to 10-25% of your total heating bill. To prevent heat loss through your windows, you can replace single-pane windows with double-glaze ones.
- Insulate your home
Insulation plays a key role in lowering your bills. The level of insulation you should install depends on the area of your house. Your attic, walls, floors and any basement are the main areas where you should consider adding insulation.