ENERGY SAVING WORLD
Whether you care about the environment or just want to save on your energy bills there are solutions that can make this happen. Using efficient heating and cooling, hot water systems and solar panels can make a huge impact on your bank account as well as the environment.
Power Saving Heating
There are passive ways you can keep warm in winter, including great insulation and double glazing for your windows. If you’re still feeling the cold there are a couple of solutions which won’t be detrimental for the environment and go easy on your bills. You might consider reverse cycle air conditioning units or efficient wood fires. Which one you choose will depend on your preferences and also the feasibility of getting them installed at your property. You can view the government rebates on power saving systems for you home at http://yourenergysavings.gov.au/rebates.
Reverse Cycle Air Conditioning Units
If you’re looking for a system that you can use all year round to keep you cool in summer and warm in winter then reverse cycle air conditioning units could be the ideal option for you. They work by drawing in heat from the outside air, even on chilly nights and transfer it inside. A refrigerant moves through an external coil which absorbs heat from the outside air. After this the refrigerant is then put through a compressor in a unit inside the house which has a fan to distribute the heat around the room. With high quality units and a wide choice from manufacturers like Fujitsu you will be able to find a unit that suits your needs.
Three or more units of heat are given out for every unit of electricity used to operate the reverse cycle air conditioning unit. The majority of electric heaters use heat directly, using all the electricity to convert it to heat. To run a reverse cycle air conditioning costs roughly a third of what it costs to run an electric heater.
The flow of the refrigerant can also be reversed to provide an efficient form of cooling in the summer. This makes a reverse cycle air conditioning unit a great addition for year round comfort.
Efficient Wood Fires
Nothing beats the smell of a wood fire on a cold evening. As long as your wood is sustainably harvested, it’s an excellent fuel option to heat your home. Most people don’t consider where they are getting their wood from and often it’s an unsustainable source. By choosing sustainably obtained wood you’re saving habitats and preventing the extinction of rare species. Also avoid treated timbers as these can emit toxic pollutants as they burn. For more information on wood fires and other energy efficient heating solutions take a look at these guys who are experts: Tas Energy Savers, they provided us with great advice and information.
There are a number of ways of getting sustainable firewood. There are plantations that are sustainably managed. Otherwise it can be a by-product from tree lopping, saw milling or waste timber. If you are sitting on sizeable land you might be able to gather from your property if you follow the guidelines for sustainability.
Where you live determines if this is a suitable option for you as they’re not a good idea in an urban setting. This is due to the air pollution they create plus there are emissions linked with getting the firewood to your place.
If you’ve decided a wood fire is the heating solution for you the most energy efficient way to burn it is in an airtight slow combustion heater. They are the cheapest to run as they get the most out of the wood hence using less wood. Make sure you are using it properly to limit air pollution. Steer clear of modified heaters that have been changed so that they can burn overnight.
The strong Australian sun can be put to good use by saving energy and avoiding wasting valuable resources. Solar panels use the sun’s light energy and convert it into electrical current. Although its expensive to get started with solar panels, once they’re up and running they generate free electricity and should work efficiently for the next 20 years or so.
With technology forever changing a lithium-ion battery system is currently being developed which will benefit many households. It will work to allow the storage of any extra energy that’s not been used in the day, providing for use in the evenings to minimise the need to buy electricity from the mains power grid.
Turning sunlight into electricity doesn’t use up fossil fuels and doesn’t produce any greenhouse gas emissions. Currently the excess is fed back to the grid and you will receive a feed in tariff which is determined by your state run scheme. You can read more about the Australian government renewable energy schemes here. And more about solar panels here.
HOT WATER SYSTEMS
Not everyone can get hooked up to gas, but if you can it can be a real energy saver. Hot water systems need to be heated up and if you can use gas over electricity you’ll be saving yourself a fair few dollars. Solar panels will also do the trick, particularly in summer when there is no shortage of sunlight. Hot water is used in bathrooms, laundries and kitchens and can make a big difference to your energy bills. What you use, you pay for so make sure you use it wisely.
Gas Boosted Solar
Gas and solar make a good team and you could opt for a gas boosted solar hot water system (if gas is a viable option for you). When the sun is shining let it do the work for free and when it’s not, gas kicks in for an energy efficient alternative.
Solar Hot Water Systems
If gas isn’t available in your area you can still make the most of the sun, a free resource to heat up your hot water. Living in Australia there’s no shortage of sunlight and by taking advantage of this you’re protecting the environment. As producing electricity to do the same thing emits greenhouse gases.
Gas Hot Water Systems
A gas hot water system is cheaper than solar to install. However, you need to weigh up the running costs. If you’re already connected to gas it can be very cost efficient. Although if your using the bottled gas (LPG) it might work out quite expensive. Gas is better than electric for the environment as it produces substantially less greenhouse gases so it’s something worth considering.