Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Challenge Check In: Reducing My Electricity Usage [#CTWW]

Just a little reminder about the multi-month challenge from Mrs. Green

My challenge is to reduce the usage by 10% each week. My plan was to track the electric and gas usage by taking a reading every Monday morning at 7am.

How did I do?

My spreadsheet is below. The numbers in green are positives because I am reducing usage.  The reds are negatives because I am using more than the previous week.

Electricity: Used to power lights, appliances, A/C, etc.

I did pretty good for the first two weeks, but the last week had an increase. The only change I would think of is that we hosted Bible Study and my husband worked on the computer some nights instead of going to bed, so that bumped up the electricity usage.

 Used for heating and hot water.
Results: I am surprised by the huge variations and jumps. I have been lowering one more degree when we are at work during the day. My husband took a few baths because of the colder weather and we bumped up the temperature during Bible Study.

I will continue to track weekly usage and take more detailed notes so that I can pinpoint what we are doing or not doing.  Here is my strategy for the coming weeks:

  1. Turn 2 TV sets with cable boxes when at work during the day.
  2. Turn down one more degree (in addition to the one above) when at work during the day.
  3. Follow my husband around the house and turn off lights behind him. :)
  4. What advice can you offer?


Grandma Bonnie said...

I wish I had advice. I am forever following everyone around turning off lights. I heard it helps to unplug the small appliances we are not using such as the toaster and microwave and plug them in when we use them. It might work if you can get everyone in the household on board.

Unknown said...

Wow ... I think you're doing great! I really like that you're tracking weekly and trying to determine where the changes happen.

One area to check are all the devices that have a clock on them (microwave, DVD player, etc.) - they all use a LOT of energy. Another place to look are the recharging devices (cell phone, toothbrush, ipod, etc.) - devices don't need to be continually charged so once they are charged up, unplug the charger because it continues to use energy so that it's "ready". Another idea ... twist off some of the bulbs in the bathroom - most of us don't really need 5-10 vanity bulbs. Using table-top appliances (crock pot, toaster oven, etc.) instead of the stove/oven will also help save energy.

Hope some of those ideas help! :-)

Unknown said...

Bonnie - great advice about the small appliances. People always forget those, especially ones that are hard to reach (my microwave is not accessible).

Getting everyone in board is the big hurdle! :)

Unknown said...

I have tried to institute measures to reduce electricity usage in our house, but we somehow seem to be stuck at the same level.

Unknown said...

Tubbytelly - I think at some point, we're going to be stuck at the same level, especially if we don't take drastic measures like turning the cable box/TV combination every day and sticking with it. It's almost like a lifestyle change, lol.

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