When shopping for new appliances or seeing ads on TV, the term ‘energy efficiency’ comes up a lot. From ad and product labels to promises of cash back incentives or rebates, they all use the phrase; but do you know what energy efficient actually means? According to BusinessDictonary, energy efficiency is defined as “the percentage of total energy input to a machine or equipment that is consumed in useful work and not wasted as useless heat.” So in other words, a product is more energy efficient if it uses the same amount of energy as a traditional type of the same product, but lasts longer or works better. Energy efficient can also mean the product uses less energy than the traditional version, but still performs the same.
So, energy efficient = using less energy but doing more, without excessive waste. Take a light bulb for example. Traditional light bulbs wasted a lot of heat as they produced light. Energy-saving light bulbs, however, create the same amount of light without the side-effect of excessive and wasted heat, therefore using less energy to produce the same amount of light. Voila – energy efficient!
This concept applies to all energy-saving products and appliances. An energy-efficient washing machine will wash your clothes just as well, if not better, using the same amount of power or less than the older version. Same goes for an energy efficient fridge that still keeps your food fresh and cool using less energy than the older model did.
The term “energy efficient” can also be used in a broader sense. Instead of a single appliance or product, let’s use a building as the example. If one building uses the same amount of energy to create cool air as another building, the building that can stay cooler and retain cool air longer, rather than creating a small amount and losing it, is by definition the more energy efficient building.
Why Should We Be Energy Efficient?
Energy consumption has been steadily increasing over the past few decades. Our planet has a limited number of natural resources and, as those are depleted, pollution contaminates the air we breathe and vital habitats are destroyed. Becoming more energy efficient manages the growth of energy consumption, therefore limiting its growth rate. This helps safeguard our planet, saving natural habitats and ensuring our future generations have energy to use.
What is Energy Consumption?
Energy consumption is a measurement of the amount of energy used up by a product, system or appliance. This measurement can apply to a person, a business or an entire country. Energy conservation means using less energy, very little energy, or no energy at all. You can estimate your home appliance/electric energy usage to evaluate where you are using too much and determine what you can change to conserve that energy. Energy.gov provides a calculator that allows you to find the annual energy consumption of a product, as well as the cost to operate it.
Why is Energy Efficiency Important?
There are three main reasons energy efficiency is important and plays a vital role in our daily lives.
- The Environment – As energy use increases, carbon emissions released into the atmosphere also increases. This depletes natural resources just as gas, coal and oil. By using energy as efficiently as possible, our dependence on these energy sources is reduced.
- The Economy – Our global economy is heavily reliant on oil and gas, two of the most important natural resources. As these resources are depleted they become scarcer and less available, however, our reliance on them stays the same (or even increases). This results in a cost increase for the resources resulting in financial stress and energy deficiency around the world.
- Your Check Book – No one wants to pay more for necessities like water and heat, and being energy efficient keeps these costs down. The goal is to meet your energy needs, yet pay as little as possible for the energy consumed.
How to Increase Your Energy Efficiency
Becoming more energy efficient starts at home. First, take a look at the energy consumption calculator mentioned above for the electrical appliances in your home. It is important to note that if you find something in your home isn’t energy efficient, it is NOT energy efficient to throw the product away and replace it with a new energy efficient appliance right away. It is better to wait until the appliance wears out and then replace it with new, energy-saving products.
Here are a few ways you can get started:
Use less electricity
- Turn off appliances and lights not being used
- Invest in rechargeable batteries
- Shut your computer down when not in use
Switch to energy-saving light bulbs
- These use up to 80% less electricity than traditional light bulbs and last up to ten times longer
Cut down the cost of heating and cooling your home
- Set your water heater to 120 degrees
- Invest in a programmable thermostat
- Set your AC to 78 degrees when you’re home and increase by 10-15 degrees when you’re away
- Set your heat to 68 degrees when you’re home and lower by 5-10 degrees when you’re away
- Insulate your roof and walls
US Home Filter Is Here For You
Family owned and operated for four generations now, we know all about the importance of energy efficiency. Improving air filtration is the most beneficial thing that can be done to keep your HVAC system energy efficient. Air filtration provides us with a means to attain the desired level of indoor air quality. Air filters have became more refined and specialized which allowed us to go beyond system protection into cleaning contaminants, allergens, and other bothersome particles from our air using high-efficiency pleated air filters. This has allowed a significant improvement in indoor comfort, cleaner air in our homes and businesses, and energy-efficient HVAC systems.
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At US Home Filter, we appreciate each and every one of our customers. We are here to help you choose the best solutions for your individual needs. Whether you need help with one of our standard stock size air filters, a Whole House Air Cleaner replacement filter, Grille filters, or if you are overwhelmed by choosing the right custom size air filter, we will be happy to personally work with you to help ensure you order exactly what you need and clear up any misconceptions! For personal assistance or questions about your air filter needs, please contact us now online or call us at (855) 237-1673 and we will do our very best to help you in selecting the perfect filter for your individual needs. We want to earn your business and we guarantee your satisfaction! Take advantage of our quality products, vast selection, low prices, and enjoy FREE SHIPPING on every air filter order within the Contiguous USA.