Tag Archive: electronic devices

Looking for ways to save energy can be intimidating. Far too often you’ll come across suggestions that sound great and promise significant energy savings, but they’re based on buying something that carries a hefty price tag. Energy is often one of the most expensive commodities we have to factor into our budgets, especially if you aren’t lucky enough to be able to shop for a provider on energyproviderstexas.com. For some, being on a tight budget is the entire reason they’re aggressively going after energy savings. As opposed to those posts that suggest spending hundreds of dollars on new technologies, this is a list of 5 energy saving tips that won’t cost you a penny!

1. Stop unwanted energy waste

Did you know that many electronic devices use power even when they’re “turned off?” From televisions to cellphone chargers, many devices are constantly in stand-by mode, even after you press the power button. In order to keep your devices from using power after you’ve turned them off, in most instances you have to physically break the connection to your home’s circuit. Whether breaking the connection means unplugging your devices or just using a power strip, ensuring that your devices don’t use unneeded power will help you save money each month.

2. Program your thermostat

Do you have a programmable thermostat? If you do, it’s highly likely that you’ve never taken the time to actually program it to optimize your heating and cooling efficiency. Depending on the model, programming can be a daunting task, but it’s definitely one worth taking on. When you program your thermostat you can prevent the system from running when no one is home. In just a few minutes, programming your thermostat can save you lots of money on energy costs, simply by limiting when the biggest energy consumer in your home is turned on.

3. Only run the dishwasher when it’s full

If you have the bad habit of running the dishwasher at the end of every day, regardless of how many dirty dishes there are, making one simple change to your behavior makes it possible for you to save more energy than you’d expect. Running the dishwasher uses the same amount of energy regardless of how many dishes are being cleaned. The same thing goes for your washing machine. If you’re not washing full loads, you’re wasting money on energy. Next time you need to reuse a particular utensil that’s dirty, consciously think to wash it individually before starting the dishwasher when it only has one meal’s dishes in it.

4. Replace incandescent bulbs with more efficient models

I know, I know. I told you this post was all about ways to save energy without spending money, and while energy efficient bulbs can be expensive, there are also ways you might be able to get replacements for free! Many utility companies have recently instituted programs that distribute energy efficient bulbs to their customers free of charge. These sorts of efficiency projects are incentivized by the government, and if you’ve got lots of incandescent bulbs in your house, you should contact your utility company to see if they offer one of these programs to their customers.

5. Adjust your home’s temperature by just 1-2 degrees

Whether you’re talking about raising your home’s temperature in the summer or lowering it in the winter, just a degree or two can make a significant difference when it comes to your energy costs at the end of the month. Furthermore, just a degree here or there won’t make that much difference in your overall comfort. After all, you can always run a fan in the summertime or throw on an extra blanket in the winter.

If you take the time to embrace some of these energy saving tips, with any luck you’ll be able to save money on your energy costs, and when you’re on a tight budget, we all know that every dollar counts.

Taking a Peek at Hybrid Cars

At this present time where the cost of crude oil is at its highest level, hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs) are alternative that are gaining more shares in the market. These are vehicles or cars use two separate power sources namely the traditional engine that uses internal combustion and a motor/generator which is electrically driven. This is taking each type of vehicle’s good points and combining them into one product while aligning certain objectives to improve what is best in every individual car.

The technology used by hybrids includes:

Regenerative Brake System: This takes the kinetic energy which is normally lost during the traditional braking system process and in turn uses this to recharge the battery to power the rest of the electrical needs of the hybrid such as for its electronic devices. This gives free energy to the battery while at the same time reduces the wear and tear of the brake parts. This braking system is a very environmentally friendly technology. If compared to the conventional braking system that involves friction which is extremely inefficient since the overall momentum of the vehicle is being change to heat by the friction in the brakes. The system used by the regenerative braking uses the energy that is present then restores it back towards the system greatly reducing wasted energy. This system when used in a hybrid car permits the engine of the gas powered vehicle to run slower since the electric battery is constantly charged. Likewise this will in effect allow fewer emissions to the environment and reduces oil consumption. Regenerative braking on the other hand is helping in the preservation of our natural resources. If continuously implemented in other cars and public vehicles, it will reduce environmental emissions. Its effectiveness is experienced in Prius and other hybrids as it showed the potential for this particular technology to be fully utilized in more energy saving ventures.

Electrically Driven and Assisted Motor. The electric motor that is found in hybrids; deliver an additional power which helps the gas engine during acceleration, passing or climbing hills. This electric motor is smaller and more efficient than gas in this task. In other car, the motor still provides the needed power for low-speed driving where engines with internal combustion are believed to be least efficient. The reduced engine size and power has made hybrid cars better in performance since it has less engine weight and optimum performance. This smaller engine functions continuously following the ideal power range while the traditional engines operate in a broader range but have a narrow optimum range.

Automatically Starts and Shuts off. The concept here makes use of an automatically shut-off mechanism to the engine when the car stops and when it restarts there is only the pressing of the accelerator. By cutting the power completely during these periods; it already reduces fuel consumed and likewise reduce the emissions during idling. This helps prevent idling wasted energy.

Summary:

Hybrids consider two basic areas in vehicles which is the fuel consumption and reduction of harmful emissions through three distinct mechanisms:

  1. Regenerative braking which is the reusing wasted energy.
  2. Electric motor to compensate Reducing the size and power of the internal combustion engine and using the better torque of.
  3. Reduction in wasted energy during idling and at cruising speed modes through cutting of power on the internal combustion engine which may be partly or in totality.

Conclusion:

The increased weight in hybrids due to the addition of the electric motor and battery pack could adversely affect fuel that is supposed to be saved. Though this weight generally does not affect when driving at cruising speed; it implies that it is ideally good only for urban transport needs. Another disadvantage of this technology is the initial cost. There are even claims that the fuel savings generated through its use cannot even out the cost of purchase. However the technology is still being refined and it is expected to improve in the next five years. Maybe we should wait until Ford, GM, Mazda, Nissan, Honda, Peugeot, Renault and Toyota can give the secret recipe to make hybrids work more effectively.