How much energy do your computer systems use? What about your kitchen? Lighting? Do you know where energy is being wasted?
Read on the find out how to measure which business appliances are sucking your energy usage to start planning for a more energy efficient future.
What You’ll Need
- Your latest energy bill
- A Watts Clever Plug-in Power Meter ($27.95 from ReductionRevloution.com.au)
Figuring our your cost per unit
The first thing you’ll need to do is work out what you’re paying per kWh (Kilowatt Hour).
Take your energy bill and look for the final dollar amount figure on your bill. You’ll notice that all sorts of other charges may have been lumped into this cost – on peak and off-peak, supply charges, GST adjustments, discounts and the like. Take your total kWh usage and divide that by your bill cost.
For example, a total cost of $377.95 for 2389 kWh = $0.158 per unit.
Using the Watts Clever Plug-in Power Meter
Watts Clever Plug-in Power Meter’s allow you to accurately measure the KwH usage of individual appliances by plugging it in between the appliance and an electrical outlet. You can also measure a group of appliances by plugging it in between a power board and an electrical outlet.
You may choose to purchase multiple units so you can take many measurements at the same time, or alternatively you can use the same meter for one week at a time on each appliance you’d like to measure.
But for larger businesses, or businesses with many appliances it would be well worth your money investing in a few to uncover your energy suckers faster.
If you have multiples of the same appliances (such as computers), you may choose to only measure one of them to give you an indicative estimate of how much energy each of those appliances use. For example, if you have 5 computers in your office space use one meter on one computer and multiply your results by 5 to get an idea of what all of the computers are using.
You can use the device on an appliance over a day, a week, a month, a quarter, or even the whole year depending on how much data you’d like to gather. But you may want to start by just using it for one week at a time.
Analyse your results and make changes to your appliances
Keep a detailed record of what each of your appliances use over a week.
At the end of the week, review your results – which appliances are using the most energy? Which appliances are still using energy even when they are in standby mode or switched off (but not at the power point)?
Here are some energy guzzlers and associated savings identified with Watts Clever Plug-In Power Meters:
- One desktop computer set-up was found to use 22 watts in standby (costing $40 per year when it was not even being used).
- A sound system’s sub-woofer was using 10 watts in standby (costing $20 per year unused).
- A dishwasher’s lower temperature setting used 0.4 kWh less per load saving the household $36 per year.
Use the data to make changes in your business space – turn off appliances at the socket when not in use or invest in new appliances with much better energy efficiency for any appliances you identified that guzzle your energy usage.