How to Audit Your Own Energy Usage
The simple answer to the question of auditing your own energy usage is to add up the total demand of your
utilities by the family and divide by the number of family members.
The resulting figure is how much power you use but this simplistic formula is both incomplete and lacks one
Why undertake an energy audit unless you are prepared to make changes in your energy usage and therefore reduce
your carbon footprint?
Each of us uses energy in our daily lives without realizing how much or the impact even small changes we make
can make to reduce it.
The use of a vehicle, the demands on energy resources to store and deliver water to us, and the food we choose
all have a significant impact on the environment.
By examining the way we use and waste resources, a greater understanding of the actual amount of energy we
consume will be arrived at. Initially we should audit the household demand for power with the commitment to
Are your heating, lighting and other demands efficient uses?
Look at the advent of new light bulb technology and how the simple effect of replacing an old incandescent unit
with a CFL [compact fluorescent light bulb] can save up to 75% of our lighting power demand.
Is your house well insulated and draft free?
No point in knowing how much power we use if we don't find out how much disappears through the roof, floors and
leaks around doors and windows. Look at the type of vehicle we select for commuting and its energy efficiency.
Do you keep it well tuned and maintained? The pressure on oil resources and the resulting consequences of
pollution from combustion engines contribute to our potential quality of life and the future climate of the
On a similar theme have you considered recycling some of the 'trash' your household produces?
Food waste can be composted to improve the quality of soil in your garden. Paper products and cardboard
packaging can be returned to make other packaging products and some metals and plastics have further uses when
sorted and recycled.
The choice of appliances in the home can make a big difference to our energy audit. This demand can also be
reduced by the simple act of turning an appliance off at the wall instead of leaving it in standby mode. Washing
machines that use less water and better efficiency rated water heating can save you money with less power
The motivation for an energy audit need not just be from a desire to be more eco-friendly.When you have reached
the point where you are making savings however you may then want to consider alternatives to power supply from your
utility company. These can include generating your own with solar or wind powered domestic systems.
In some states these are subsidized or offer tax
breaks for green energy systems installation. Your energy audit may turn up some surprises too if you extend it
to the workplace environment.
Examine how the building's lighting is so inefficient with large areas continually floodlit without anyone
present and you will soon get the idea for making savings here too. The installation of time switches and dimmers
can be more effective here than in the home.
As I stated at the start, an audit is only the first step towards committing to a more energy efficient
lifestyle. The rewards both in your wallet and to a better future for the world we live in and want to leave to
future generations are incalculable!
Remember that purchasing the Green DIY Energy kit will get you a FREE starter kit to perform a fast and
effective audit on your house: