Energy-Efficient Practices for Working From Home
Do you feel like working from home is driving up your Prepaid electricity bill in a seemingly unprecedented and insurmountable way? In truth, there are several energy efficient practices that you can bring into your daily routine in a very simple, easy and accessible manner. Real below for energy efficient habits that you can try out when working from home to help save money on your electricity bill.
Energy-Efficient Habits for Working From Home
1. Optimize Your Window Shades
Instead of turning on the lights in your home office, take advantage of the natural daylight that comes through your windows to brighten and warm up your space. However, it is energy efficient to keep your windows covered in any parts of your home that you aren’t currently occupying. Blinds, shades, and other window coverings have an aesthetic and functional benefit as they are able to block out a portion of the heat that enters our homes. During the warmer months, you can practice free room cooling by covering up your windows during the day. You can also shade your windows from the outside to further decrease the heat that is able to enter your home.
2. Use Fans Instead of Air Conditioning to Cool Down
If you find that your home office is uncomfortably warm when you have the windows exposed, you should fight the urge to turn on your air conditioning and instead use a floor and/or fan to cool down the room. While it feels as though floor fans decrease the temperature in the room, they are actually just circulating the air, and if your office is already warm, the fan may just push around hot air. To avoid this, point the fan out an open window so that it can push the hot air outside, allowing for cool air to move inside. Alternatively, you can place a fan across from an open window you can create a cross breeze to cool off the room.
3. Plus Your Workstation into a Powerstrip
Even when you power down your monitors, docking stations, and laptops, if they are still plugged into the wall they are likely continuing to consume energy, which is known as “vampire energy.” One of the best ways to mitigate vampire energy is by plugging your entire workstation into a Smart Strip surge protector, which automatically cuts off all energy when it’s not needed. For maximum energy savings, it is recommended to unplug the power strip all together once you are done with your work day so that your electronics are not consuming needless energy overnight.
4. Use the Dishwasher At the End of the Day
When you work from home, it is likely that you will often have all 3 meals at home, resulting in a big pile up of dishes throughout the day. While it might seem practical to hand wash your dishes immediately after you use them, it is actually more efficient to utilize your dishwasher. So much water is wasted while hand washing dishes, particularly as people typically leave the sink running when manually removing food debris from dish ware. It is estimated that individuals use 27 gallons of water per load to clean dishes by hand and that households waste over 6,000 gallons of water by hand washing per year. Thus, it is more energy efficient to utilize a dishwasher, particularly if you have or can afford to upgrade to an Energy Star appliance, which uses as few as 3 gallons of water to complete a cycle. Additionally, an easy way to improve efficiency is to only utilize the dishwasher at the end of the day when there is a full load in order to minimize excessive use of detergent, water and energy.
What Energy-Efficient Habits Do You Implement When Working From Home?
Of all the energy-efficient practices listed above, which seems the most accessible for you to try immediately? It is recommended to layer on one at a time for the best energy saving results so that you have a solid period of time to see if this new habit works for you. Don’t miss out on potential savings on your electricity bill and start implementing these energy-efficient habits in your home office today!