Phantom Energy

By PSU EcoMerge Capstone - 12:35 AM

Blog posted by Liliam Huckleberry

"Phantom Energy" is a fascinating subject to me, since I recently started looking into it my self. About three month ago I realized that in the last couple of month my electric bill had dramatically increased. I knew I needed to do something about it and decided to perform an "Energy Reduction Experiment" in my home. I have heard that, small changes like unplugging your TV or VCR/DVD player can in the long run save you energy and money. Therefore, I decided to put this theory to test.

The first thing I did was to call my electric company, and asked them to give me tips on how to save electricity. A lot of what they told me was basically common sense, common sense I was obviously not using before. They said to unplug all electronic devices and that any wall pluggins not in use, needed to be covered as well, because wall pluggins are open to the outside environment so cold and hot air escapes through it, and that the heater and air conditioner have to compensate for the lost of heat during the summer months or gain of cold air during the cold months. Most of their advice was great, with the exception of one.

They told me that, turning the heater completely of, whenever I left the house would save me energy. This actually happens to not be true; in fact this should never be done because when you turn the thermostat back on, it takes a lot more energy to bring the temperature up or down from a very low or high temperature. Then from a few degrees lower or higher, if you were to leave the thermostat at room temperature.

For the fist month of my experiment I only saved $10, the second month I saved $13 and the last month, I saved $18. When I started this experiment I was skeptical that this would work, but I am glad I gave it a try, because now I know that it truly does work. By making small changes in my house I was not only able to save money, but more importantly I am making a far greater contribution and that is saving our environment. This website provides some helpful tips, on how we can conserve energy and help our environment. http://www.saskenergy.com/saving_energy/tips.asp

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