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Gadgets & Home Improvement

Switch off and save

Don’t use electricity unnecessarily
CATS Recruit in The Straits Times - April 4, 2011
By: Adele Ong
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Switch off and save

Electricity prices are going up. Here are a few tips for how to conserve energy at home, save the environment, and stop wasting money too.

  • Switch off lights, fans and air-conditioners when no one is in the room where these appliances are on. Don’t just leave the TV set or computer on either if you don’t think you will be watching any programmes or using the computer for at least the next hour.
  • On cool days or rainy nights, don’t use the air-conditioner. Switch on a fan instead to circulate the air and feel more comfortable. A fan runs on much less electricity than an air-conditioner does, so reserve air-con use for the very hottest days and stuffiest nights. Even then, turn up the temperature to about 25 degrees Celsius to save energy – don’t leave it running at the coldest temperature setting.
  • When you get up at night to use the toilet or for any other reason, light your way with a torchlight that runs on rechargeable batteries, or with wall-mounted, battery-operated LED lights. Don’t switch on the house lights unnecessarily for these short bursts of time. Not only will that use up more electricity than a small, battery-operated appliance, it also reduces the lifespan of the house lights in the long run.
  • Change incandescent bulbs to energy-saving alternatives, but don’t leave them on for no reason just because they consume less electricity!
  • Do not leave appliances on standby. That wastes a good bit of energy over the long term. Switch appliances off, and switch off at the wall socket too. If you simply leave things plugged in without switching off at the wall, electricity can continue leaking through the plug – a sheer waste of it.
  • When you boil water, it makes more sense to boil only the quantity you need (eg half a kettle) rather than boil enough to fill the whole kettle, and only end up using one cup for tea. The rest of the water will only cool down again, and there would have been no point in heating it to begin with.

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