An energy check is an analysis of your home to determine its energy usage and costs, and to identify specific energy efficiency measures that would be appropriate and economically attractive for your home.
Could your home’s energy efficiency be improved by a change of routine, thermostat setting, upgrading of equipment, or unplugging of a gadget rarely used? The first step to taking a whole-house energy efficiency approach is to find out which parts of your home use the most energy. A home energy audit can help you decide on the most effective measures for cutting your energy costs. Take inventory of rooms and areas (inside and out) gadgets and appliances. Note how long anything that consumes energy is generally in use:
- Lighting: Number of lamps, style/fitting, wattage, control/switches, duration of use
- Heating/Hot Water: Boiler age, service record, hot water tank, pipe work insulation, Heat sources ( radiators, fires, fans), fuel type, control, duration of use, thermostatic value use, thermostat location, programme of heating / hot water system
- Ventilation: Homes need ventilation to remove moisture we generate from our daily activities (e.g. washing and cooking). Unnecessary draughts could be avoided with draught proofing e.g. letterbox, keyholes, skirting boards etc
- Windows and Doors: draughts around seals and frames, integrity of glazing, single double, triple
- Gas, electric meters: do you know where these are located and regularly read these to monitor your own consumption
- Washing, Cooking, Laundry: Make a note of the frequency of use over a period of time to track unnecessary wastage, note the age of your appliances and if possible the watts consumed (supplied by manufacture on information panel on rear of appliance)
Gadgets: make a note how many appliances, gadgets require energy e.g. MP3s, games console, cooker clock, TV, computer, laptop, alarm clock
Here is a list of what typically may be used in the average home
Prioritize improvements, starting with low or no cost measures, like turning things off when not in use, and avoiding standby. Then think about a budget and timetable for those actions that may require planned expenditure.