When considering installing solar panels in your home, it is important to understand which of your appliances might be draining the most energy.
The reality is that not all appliances are made equal when it comes to energy usage. Some use surprisingly little, while others can ring up your electric bill very quickly.
Which Devices Uses The Most Electricity in Your Home?
Here is a breakdown of the power consumption of household appliances, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA):
- Over 30% of all residential electricity consumption is from heating and cooling. Air conditioners are one of the biggest electricity draining sources, however, modern HVAC systems can decrease electricity usage.
- Water heating accounted for 12% of all residential electricity consumption.
- Lighting and refrigeration both account for an additional 6%each of total residential electricity consumption.
- Computers and similar electronic devices only consumed 2% of all electricity used by residential houses.
- Power required to heat water, dishwashers, and clothes washers actually consume less than 1% each.
- The remaining 30% of all household electricity consumption is from small electric devices, ceiling fans, heating elements, exterior lights, outdoor grills, pool and spa heaters, backup electricity generators, and motors.
- Additional sources of electrical use can be from ‘phantom sources’ which is any device which while not directly being used can draw power.
How to Measure Electricity Usage By Each Appliance
A great resource for calculating your home’s appliance electricity usage is the Department of Energy’s Appliance and Home Electronic Energy Calculator.
You can make a list of the appliances in your home and how often you use each of those appliances over the course of a given month. This breakdown should give you a feel for the average electricity usage you should be expecting.
Keep in mind that if your bill is higher than your estimate, it may mean that some appliances are not running as efficiently as it could be. In some cases, it might be worth updating older appliances to more energy efficient models.
Offset Your Energy Use & Save Money With Solar Panels
No matter what level of monthly energy consumption, one of the best ways to dramatically reduce your electricity bill is to invest in solar.
By installing solar panels on your property, you are able to offset your electricity consumption. In some cases, you can even earn tax credits for solar installation, so the investment pays off in more ways than one.