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Why you should get a Home Energy Audit now?

By: Muthu Rubhan

Wise men always insist on “CHANGE” to be taken up from oneself and his home to the world, be it Mahatma Gandhiji who said “Be the change you want to see in the world” or Ronald Reagan who said “All the great change begins at the dinner table”. 

So to celebrate the 50th anniversary of “The Earth Day”- 2020, which comes with the theme “Climate Action”, we can change at least one thing about us, that can contribute in curbing the untiring climate crisis the world’s enduring now.

This article untangles one such thing that can cut down the emission rates remarkably while reducing your spending, saving your wallet and that is HOME ENERGY AUDIT.

Firstly what’s an energy audit?

An energy audit is defined as systemic inspection, survey, and analysis of energy flow for conserving energy. It’s intended to reduce the amount of energy input to get the same amount of output to ultimately reduce the energy expense and carbon footprints.

Energy audit is a routine procedure done all over the world. An industrial energy audit is mandatory at regular intervals in countries like Germany, Japan, UK, Italy, South Korea, etc. World countries has established separate institutions to carry out energy audits at various levels for various facilities.

In India, the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (established 2001) functioning under the Ministry of Power, is obligated to superintend the energy audits in 13 industrial sectors including aluminum, cement, paper, fertilizers, etc. Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab & Rajasthan are the front runners of the countries in using Energy-Efficient Technologies in these sectors, currently.

There are a lot of initiatives set in motion by BEE, but the ‘Star Rating’ project that kicked off in 2006 needs a special mention, that helps us all in purchasing Energy Efficient Appliances per diem. More the stars, the more the savings, lesser the energy used, the merrier. 

Now, what’s “Home Energy Audit?”

Home energy audit would be self-explanatory by now, it’s basically assessing and inspecting all the energy needs in your homes, followed by a simple analysis and changes that can improve your energy efficiency, by cutting off the superfluous energy that is lost without modifying the output. It saves your energy expenditure as well as does your part against the warming world.

Many times people mistake Home Energy Audit can only be done by professionals, but the best part is you can easily DO IT YOURSELF.  

Why “Home Energy Audit?”

The globe is warming, we got less than 360 gigatons of CO2  left in the carbon budget, with 50 percent chance that can prevent the climate catastrophe. We got to do something about it, right? Also, it saves your money, so why not do it?

Though energy audit is mandated for 13 industrial sectors, our national industrial energy consumption is just 40% of total energy consumed per annum, which includes the industries that aren’t from these 13 sectors.

24% of energy is used domestically, small commercial businesses and agriculture consume 9% and 18% of total energy respectively. But still, this 24% percentage is the bigger number.

Otherwise, when this small contribution when magnified in masses, can enormously cut the emission rates of our country.

I’m talking about statically significant data, our annual per capita energy consumption currently is 1181 KwH (to note, it gradually increased from 97.77 KwH, 1977), our population is 1.38 billion, now.

Say if everyone gets to save at least 10 KwH each year, so total of 1.38*1010  KwH of energy will be saved per year. IMAGINE HOW COOL IT IS! It could greatly reduce our country’s carbon footprint. 

How to do it?

You can do it yourself if you spend a few hours of your time:

  • The electrical appliance
  • The power of the electrical appliance in Kw
  • The time it is used each day in Hours
  • Product of column 2 and column 3, which gives the energy consumed for each appliance in KwH
  • If it is energy efficient, think of ways you can reduce its uses. For starters, you can switch off all the appliances when you leave the room.
  • If it is not energy efficient, please try to get rid of the old ones and replace it with new ones. Trust me, you can save significantly more money by replacing the old appliance with energy-efficient ones.  

Compare your calculations with your electricity bill. Keep a regular track of it to reduce your bills and save energy.

Here are a few more pointers to check during the audit:

  • Check for any leakage of water in all the faucets and pipelines. Replace your shower heads with low flow ones, which is in turn connected to energy.
  • Check if the room with your AC is insulated properly because any leakage can cause a huge loss of power.
  • Avoid putting unwanted items and waste food in your refrigerator, cause it uses extra energy.
  • Do your laundry with cold water and minimize the use of dryers in summer
  • Lower the temperature of your water geysers.
  • Replace your regular lights with energy-efficient CFLs and LEDs. Don’t use excess lighting, unless they are necessary. 
  • Try to replace your old appliances with energy-efficient star rated new ones. 
  • Unplug your computer, laptop charger, when they are not in use. They can still use a lot of energy when turned off.

If you have made it until this, I hope you will audit the energy needs of your home and get dually benefitted, saving your wallet and our planet. This Home energy audit can be your next step towards sustainability.

Let’s celebrate this 50th anniversary of Earth Day together and Stand against global warming. Happy sustainability.

(On 50 years of Earth Day – join us in making India’s largest climate action manifesto. #FiftyForFifty. Connect with us and tell what step are you taking for climate action?)

Muthu Rubhan

Muthu Rubhan

Muthu is currently doing his II Prof medicine in Stanley Medical College, Chennai and is a budding environmentalist preferring environment to anything!

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