On an earlier post, I mentioned that my household is taking part of Sydney’s Home Energy Consumption Trial. The trial is limited to 100 households within the City of Sydney Local Government area.
According to information I have received, the key objective of the trial is to educate household members about the operating costs of electrical appliances and to encourage energy efficiency within the home.
Last week an electrician came out to install the energy monitor. One part of the monitor system is connected to our switch board which was hardly noticeable (see below before and after shots). The other part of the monitor system was a small hand held wireless energy monitor.
Our household energy switch board
Our household energy switch board after installation of energy monitor
With this wireless monitor we are able to freely move around the home with it in hand, turning appliances on and off and see straight away how much energy that appliance is using .
The monitor will remain in our home for the next twelve months and over that time we will be able to see our energy usage as cents per hour or kWh per hour or Kg green house gas per hour. Also there is a ongoing meter that shows how much up to current time we have used as well as comparing weeks, months, quarters and even years. There is no hiding from the results. What energy we use over this time is added to the total usage.
Now we as a household will know exactly what energy we are currently using. Then we can start to look at what can be done to lower our usage…..and we are already doing this.
The electrician who installed our monitor system said that we already had a reasonably low energy usage but I know we can be so much better.
Taking the handheld wireless monitor into our home office, I did a little test with the down lights.
Taken in our home office with down lights on (also in the home the fridge and phone system are on and computers are on hibernate). It is costing us 2.752 cents per hour to run these appliances.
Turned the down lights off (fridge, phones and computers remain the same): 0.590 cents per hour to run. This means the down lights in the office by themselves cost us 2.162 cents per hour to run.
With the downlights on again, we can change the mode on the wireless monitor and see that .235 Kwh of energy is used per hour to run the downlights (with fridge, phone and hibernated computers running).