Whether you’ve always worked from home, or it is a new requirement due to COVID, it would be nice to reduce your energy consumption. Here are our tips to help you stop wasting energy when using electronics working from home.
Use Natural Light
Although many of us might be stuck in the basement with nowhere else to work, if you do have access to a window, open the curtains. Using natural light during the day is not only easy on the energy bill, but also on the eyes. It can help improve your state of mind, and if you can look out on some trees and blue skies, all the better.
Turn Unused Electronics Off
It might be comforting to work with the television or radio on, but if you can avoid doing so it will have a big impact on energy use. For example, listen to music from your computer or run the news in the background instead. Also, make sure you turn off the lights when you leave a room.
Turn Down the Heat (or AC)
Since you are mostly on your own, choose clothes that will allow you to adjust your temperature to energy friendly levels. Throw on a big sweater and sweats in the winter, and wear a comfy tee and shorts in the summer. This keeps you comfortable without having to crank up your HVAC system. Just remember to change if you have a Zoom meeting!
Reduce “Vampire” Consumption
We all go about our lives with tons of electronics we don’t use always plugged in. This leads to “vampire” consumption which allows electronics to suck up electricity even though they aren’t turned on. Get into the habit of unplugging everything as the norm, and then only plugging in things when you need them.
If your work is flexible, try to work more efficiently so you can finish up early. This reduces the time your computer and other office equipment is on. Simple things like overly long meetings that take up time can be shortened, or you can simply just avoid things like longer breaks, or losing focus so you take longer to perform tasks. The less time it takes to do something, the less time your equipment is plugged in.
Choose Energy-efficient Equipment
Make sure anything that gets plugged in is ENERGY STAR qualified. This ensures high energy efficiency. Also don’t use equipment if you don’t need to. For example, paper is so yesterday. Go paperless at home and see what a difference it makes! The same goes for cranky old equipment like fax machines and even scanners. The more you can do from a single device, the more energy you’ll save.
Use Energy-saving Settings
Check your computer’s built-in energy-saving settings to make sure they are optimized. Most have low power, or energy-saving settings available in the preferences. Choose these to keep energy use to a minimum.
Plug In to Power Strips
Last but not least, use a smart power strip to avoid drawing power when you’re not at work. You can speak to your employer to see if they can reimburse you for the small investment. Point out you can leave your devices on and be ready to take calls or respond to emails without worrying about energy waste.
These tips will help you stop wasting energy while working from home.