October is National Energy Awareness month.
Are you energy aware? Take our quiz to find out!
Fact or Fiction: Energy Edition
- Turning lights off and back on takes more energy than just keeping them on when leaving a room.
Answer: Most lights do not use a significant amount of energy to turn on. LED lights are not affected at all by being turned on and off. Fluorescent lights that do require a small surge at start up use less than 15 minutes of electricity while turning on.
- Plugged in electronics do not use power as long as they are turned off.
Answer: Up to 75% of the energy electronics and appliances use can be drawn while they are off but still plugged in.
- Setting your thermostat back when you are not home uses less energy than keeping it at a constant temperature.
Answer: It takes less energy to reheat/cool a room than to maintain a constant temperature. Smart thermostats can help with scheduling setbacks when you plan to be away.
- Replacing old inefficient windows with energy efficient windows is the best way to save money.
Answer: Fiction (usually). It may not always be worth it to replace windows because of their high cost. Window film, outside awnings, sealing leaks, and thermal curtains are good first strategies to improve efficiency for a lower cost, before replacing the windows.
- Ceiling fans can make a room feel up to four degrees cooler.
Answer: Ceiling fans use much less electricity than air conditioning and can help keep you cooler while saving energy. However, note that fans do not actually cool the air down so they are only useful if a room is occupied.
- LED light bulbs are not worth the higher price compared to incandescent or compact fluorescent bulbs.
Answer: LED light bulbs last up to 25 times as long as traditional incandescent bulbs and use much less energy (they are 80% efficient while incandescent bulbs are only 10% efficient). The slightly higher cost of LED bulbs will quickly be paid back in savings.
- Using the microwave to cook uses less energy than the stove or oven.
Answer: Microwaves not only use less energy but they also do not heat up the home like ovens and stoves do. Use your microwave or outdoor grill in the summer to keep the house cooler.
You can learn more about energy conservation and efficiency at the 17th annual Henrico County Energy Fair to be held Friday October 4th from 11 AM – 1 PM in the Administration Building Courtyard. Find more details at https://henrico.us/calendar/fall-energy-fair-2019/.
Have any more questions? Contact your county Energy Manager Carrie Webster at 501-5763 or firstname.lastname@example.org.