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Blog Apr 11, 2019

What is Energy Efficiency

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What is Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency refers to the reduction of energy usage in order to complete a task that would have taken more otherwise. In some cases, energy efficiency may even enable individuals to do more with less energy. This adjustment to everyday life and processes has a number of benefits and over time has taken a place among the priorities of individuals and nations alike as it promises greater sustainability and an improved environmental impact. While improving efficiency is something that can be done by adjusting everyday devices and practices for individuals, there are other methods for bringing it about as well as.

What are the benefits of Energy Efficiency

Like many energy-conscious movements that are currently underway, energy efficiency is particularly important as it offers a host of benefits. These are not limited to improving things for a sole individual as energy efficiency can help those engaging in wise consumption, those who may help to facilitate energy distribution, as well as the world as a whole.

Better for environment

One of the most notable benefits of energy efficiency is its impact on the environment as consuming less energy means reduced demand for power-generating facilities to produce it. In generating power, harmful emissions are often exposed to the air and atmosphere, threatening individuals and the environment as well. Reducing our dependence on industrial processes will go a long way in improving the state of our planet. Various ecosystems will benefit too, cutting down on the pollutants in nature and improving the lives of animals.

Lower Energy Costs

For homeowners, better energy efficiency has a big pay off, as consuming less energy to complete everyday tasks within the home means that the monthly energy bill will drop. To aid in that, manufacturers have begun producing lines of more efficient appliances to be used within the home. When used in place of less efficient appliances, these devices are capable of saving homeowners hundreds of dollars on their utility bill each year. This can be particularly useful for those living in areas that charge high rates for energy.  

Creates jobs

One surprising benefit of efficient energy is the fact that it can actually aid in creating jobs. In 2018, there were over 2 million Americans with jobs in energy efficiency, a figure that is over five times greater than the number of workers who operate within traditional energy markets including gas and oil.

Energy Efficiency in Everyday Life

Energy efficiency takes a number of forms in our everyday life, sometimes serving in capacities that we are familiar with and other times taking on new ones. With the world so attune to it today, energy efficiency extends into a number of channels.

Energy Efficient Buildings

As entities that are responsible for nearly half of the nation’s energy usage, optimizing energy consumption in buildings is important and can have a profound impact on the amount of energy that is consumed each day. That is a fact that builders have become aware of as now energy efficiency is considered during construction. In order to bring this goal about, building designers have begun normalizing the installation of renewable sources of energy within their projects. And this isn’t limited to new buildings, as existing ones can also be subjected to changes that enable reduced energy consumption. This will ultimately benefit buildings not only from a usage perspective, but a cost perspective as well.

Vehicles

Just as with buildings, energy efficiency has begun to work its way into another component of everyday life. With millions traversing the roads everyday around the world, the amount of fuel that is used and gases released into the atmosphere is staggering. Luckily, there are emerging technologies meant to change that while allowing people to get where they’re trying to go. Electric vehicles are an alternative to traditional combustion engines that run on ignited fuel. Because of the energy that powers them, electric vehicles release no emissions and are also cheaper to run too. They may have a higher upfront cost, but their benefits cannot be denied. There are even hybrid vehicles that come equipped with both charging and combustion capabilities.  

Appliances

One of the most profound forms that energy efficiency takes is everyday appliances that remain throughout residential homes and commercial buildings. These appliances can include refrigerators, freezers, ovens, and stoves and consume far less energy than older models. Certain agencies have even taken to providing a mark of approval to indicate that appliances are indeed efficient, guaranteeing homeowners savings and reduced environmental impact. One of the most significant labels is that of Energy Star, which can be found on nearly 80 types of products. As an added bonus, the prices of many appliances are beginning to drop, granting consumers less expensive purchases and reduced monthly costs.

energy efficiency

Energy Efficiency vs. Energy Conservation

One thing that many get tripped up by is the difference between energy efficiency and energy conservation. Though some use the two interchangeably, in reality there is a difference between them. Energy efficiency is utilizing less energy to perform a task than is otherwise consumed. An example of this is switching from an incandescent bulb to an LED one. Incandescent lights convert about 20-30% of the energy they are supplied into light while an LED converts 80-90%. Energy conservation refers to behavior that enables less energy to be used. This can be illustrated simply by turning lights off in empty rooms.

Misconceptions About Energy Efficiency and Energy Use

Along with the words that are used synonymously with it, there are a number of additional misconceptions about energy efficiency and energy use. Similarly, many people believe that they have to actively work to be efficient, in some cases sacrificing elements of everyday life in order to use less energy. This is not the case, as the mechanisms for improved efficiency frequently represent one-time purchases that will continue to cut down on the energy they use without requiring any additional effort from individuals.

Another misguided notion is the belief that energy efficiency is not something that is worth investing in. While there are some cases in which individuals will have to shelve out a bit more to purchase an energy efficient product, over time the decision will pay for itself as the sustained reduction in usage and costs allow for continued saving. And though some may think that the full extent of energy efficiency can be felt by replacing any appliance, the best way to guarantee savings is to find those things that you use most frequently and purchase their energy efficient counterparts.

Tips For Improving Your Energy Efficiency

There are so many ways to improve energy efficiency within a home as countless appliances and devices consume more energy than necessary on a daily basis. Of the tips to consider, the most profound typically include the temperature of the home and the home’s water, as these represent the greatest costs in our houses.

Smart Thermostat

One effective tool for energy efficiency is a smart thermostat, which is a device that is capable of manipulating the temperature within homes and buildings without the need for human adjustment. Because they don’t have to be manually decreased or increased, the device can be programmed to operate on a cost-efficient and energy-efficient schedule free from human error and excessive power use. As an additional bonus, these devices are capable of learning our behaviors and acting in order to optimize for them so that they aren’t heating or cooling an empty space but instead are being utilized during the periods in which we are around to receive the benefit of their temperature change.

Low Flow Showerheads

Showers consume a surprising amount of water and energy as we use them for extended periods of time in order to decompress and clean ourselves off. While simply reducing the amount of time you spend within the shower is one way to cut down on the energy that is used, you can further reduce your consumption by investing in low flow showerheads. This will limit the amount of water that is able to escape from your shower faucet, cutting down on the water waste and requiring less energy to heat it. There are even aerators for your sinks that can do the same.

Cold Laundry

As you get a load of clothes together to wash, one way to improve your efficiency is by using the cold water setting instead of a warm one. In heating the water up to 130-140 degrees Fahrenheit, the laundry machine uses far more power than it would for a simple cold wash. In addition, to further improve your efficiency you will want to make sure that the load is sizable. Instead of consuming a large amount of energy on a few items, just wait until you are able to fill the machine about three-quarters of the way to use it. Just as important, be sure that you are not overfilling the washer as this will prevent your clothes from being thoroughly cleaned.

Making Energy Efficiency Part of your Life

Energy efficiency is an easy concept to grasp and to make a part of your everyday life. Whether by switching out the appliances in your home or by making a few easy investments in efficient products, it is possible to cut the amount of energy you use each day in order to save big each year. If not for the financial returns that it offers, energy efficient practices are vital for the health of our world and a brighter tomorrow. Think of that if you’re still hesitant about fully adopting efficiency and know that future generations will thank you for your decision.

Do you understand more about energy efficiency now?

For more answers to questions like “what is energy efficiency” or to find a provider that offers low energy rates, visit paylesspower.com. Offering cheap energy plans to suit both personal and business needs, Payless Power is a company committed to providing people not only with some of the best cheap electricity rates in Texas, but also with helpful customer service. Visit the website to learn more about how to save electricity at home, or connect with the online community on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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