December 2014 Newsletter
Powering the Passion for Devices
We all love to have our electronics with us 24/7; to capture a moment, to make our work place more efficient, or just to play games. They are great at making our lives easier, but many people don’t realize the amount of electricity used when charging these devices. As of January 2014:
90% of American adults have a cell phone
58% of American adults have a smartphone
32% of American adults own an e-reader
42% of American adults own a tablet computer
Each device can take, on average, 4 or more hours to charge depending on the device, but most people charge devices overnight, which can lead to overcharging and wasted power. Did you know every minute you leave your device charging more than it needs is the equivalent of running a small blender for that time period? There are many ways to reduce electricity usage with mobile devices such as switching into airplane mode when charging, which reduces the time it needs to charge, or turning the device off completely or in sleep mode when not in use. Making small changes can not only increase the life span of a device, but also reduce our use of electricity.
Eco-Friendly Home Transition
Making your home both luxurious and eco-friendly is no easy task but it isn’t necessary to sacrifice one for the other. There is a way to make your home comfortable, while also reducing your carbon footprint.
Here are a few examples to help spark some creativity:
1. Utilize local distribution:
If you consider all the transportation, fuel consumption, and miscellaneous consumption of resources needed when ordering products from another part of the country, the cons can outweigh the pros when it comes to reducing your carbon footprint. Purchasing products from local companies can be a great choice, and spending a few extra dollars to reduce unknown factors can be well worth it.
2. Make the switch:
One of the most common energy saving examples is making the switch from a traditional light bulb to an LED or CFL light bulb. Over time, electric bills can be cut down significantly. Other changes include ideas like buying energy efficient appliances, recycled material products and even investing in solar power.
3. Reduce, Reuse and Recycle:
This term is well known, but are you doing your part? This term doesn’t refer to only cans, bottles, paper and anything else the garbage man can take from your curbside. This also refers to power usage. There are many devices that can continue to pull energy from an outlet, even well after it is fully charged. With products like advanced power strips, the power strip will cut power to a device, or in some cases use internal power sources to constantly move the lowest amount of energy to the device, just enough for it to stay powered on.
These are just a few of many examples of ways to reduce the carbon footprint of a home. By initially investing a little more time and money, dramatic long term savings can be achieved through the reduction in energy bills and the use of renewable sources.
Electric Cars: Making the Switch
For most people cars are a part of daily life. Whether driving to work, riding public transportation, or running errands, cars are everywhere. Sometimes making the simple switch to riding a bike once a week may not be enough when it comes to making a complete transition. With cars like the Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf, electric cars are becoming more widely available and in models that meet the desires of most consumers. Being hybrids, they run mainly on electricity for small trips, and utilize gasoline at higher speeds to recharge the battery while traveling. With their ability to alternate between power sources, their environmental impact is greatly reduced while remaining fully powered vehicles.
Electric cars can have the added benefit of being charged at home rather than being stuck going to the gas station. Most hybrids charge via cables, generally provided when the car is purchased, which plug into a standard outlet. For those wanting a faster or more efficient charging option, electric vehicle charging stations or can be installed into the wall to eliminate the need for additional power cords. The latest charging units even have a wireless option. Although currently a bit pricey, these are likely to be the charging units of the future.
So how much is saved with electric vehicles? Current data indicates drivers can charge their vehicle at 25-50% less than they would for a gallon of gas. So it’s possible to save money and lower the impact on the environment. For more information on charging units or to have one installed contact Eco Electric. We’d be happy to prepare your home before the new electric car arrives.
Incandescent vs. LED Christmas Lights
One misshapen snowman, a Christmas tree covered with years of holiday memories, and a house decked out in multi-colored lights; all signs the holidays have arrived. The holiday season can be a cherished time of the year, as it’s a time to celebrate the spirit of family and giving. As we go about the hustle and bustle of holiday preparations, we see houses and businesses decorated in holiday lights. But the holidays can also make or break the bank, especially when it comes to electric bills. All the holiday lights and decorating can be more costly than expected, but simple changes can make the holidays burn brighter!
Instead of using the old incandescent Christmas lights, investing in LED twinkle lights can save almost 90% compared to older lights. Not only will they last longer, burn brighter and save money, but the risk of blowing a fuse in your home is also greatly diminished.
Planning a Griswold type Christmas display? Eco Electric can help install the additional outlets and make sure the appropriate wiring is in place to keep the lights on. Contact us to help you get your home ready for the holidays.