In our last column we discussed saving energy around the home and saving money as a result. We touched on ways to reduce costs contributed by lighting and appliances; more specifically, the refrigerator and washing machine. In a previous article we talked about the home office. Today we provide a few tips on reducing energy costs in the home office.
Persons working from home will most likely use electronic devices and may use them very frequently. These normally include a computer, fan or air condition, printer/copier etc. Although it saves on transportation cost it increases your home energy bills, so in order to actually realize savings there are a few things we should bear in mind.
- Selecting energy-efficient office equipment and turning off machines when they are not in use can result in significant energy savings.
- Spending a large portion of time in low-power mode not only saves energy but helps equipment run cooler and last longer.
- Using the power management settings on computers and monitors can cause significant savings.
- It is a common misperception that screen savers reduce a monitor’s energy use. Use automatic switching to sleep mode or simply turn it off.
- Another misperception is that equipment lasts longer if it is never turned off. Many appliances continue to draw a small amount of power while switched off so unplug appliances not in use and unplug battery chargers when the batteries are fully charged or the chargers are not in use.
- Use rechargeable batteries for products like cordless phones and digital cameras.
- Turn on air conditions and fans at hotter times of the day.
- Reduce the use of paper. Do double-sided printing and use printed paper with errors for scrap.
- Make use of emails and free or cheap calling systems like Skype.