Your home contains a number of energy guzzlers that consume unnecessary electricity and cost you money all year round.
You can make everyday savings on energy costs by making just a few small changes to your approach.
For homeowners and tenants: This blog article will explain how you can save on energy costs for heating, ventilation, water consumption, and electrical appliances.
Electricity prices are currently higher on the agenda in Switzerland than ever before. According to the latest studies, households in Switzerland are responsible for almost 35% of total electricity consumption. There is a lot of potential here to save electricity and therefore money. That is why the federal government recommends that all homeowners and tenants pay special attention to three areas in the home: heating/ventilation, hot water, and electrical appliances.
Everyday energy savings
The Swiss Federal Office of Energy has developed specific savings measures for all areas. These measures can, of course, also be applied to companies. Most households can save between 10% and 30% on energy consumption and by extension on energy costs by adopting these measures. Investing in insulation could even reduce consumption by up to 60% without any compromise on quality of life. And talking of savings: BANK-now advisors will be happy to work with you to create a customized budget for your household or your renovation project. But until then you can reduce your energy costs with the following tips from the Swiss Federal Office of Energy.
Heating the right way: Heating and ventilation
Two-thirds of total household energy consumption is for heating. Heat your home efficiently and you could save enough energy that every sixth year would effectively be free. The following points are important:
- Set the correct temperature
Not every room needs the same temperature: Having the living room at 20°C and the bedroom at 17°C should be fine, and both temperatures feel equally comfortable.
- Make full use of the heat
The warm air must be able to circulate freely in the rooms. You should therefore avoid blocking radiators with furniture or curtains. To stop rooms from cooling too much, it is also a good idea to keep blinds and shutters closed at night. And if having the bedroom window open at night is a must for you, it's best if you switch off the heating.
- Lower the temperature when you are away
If you are going on a winter holiday or will be away for the weekend you should lower the temperature. As a general rule, do not heat any rooms you are not using. Integrated heating controls can also be conveniently controlled via an app. Using these intelligent systems could reduce energy consumption for heating by 30–60%.
- Ventilate well in winter
When you ventilate your home, make sure you do it quickly and effectively. Three times a day for five to ten minutes is best. Open as many windows as possible at the same time. Avoid keeping tilting windows open all the time as this allows a lot of heat to escape from the rooms without enough fresh air really coming in. The lower the outside temperature, the shorter your ventilation time should be.
- Make sure the ventilation settings are correct in Minergie buildings
In most cases it is sufficient to set the ventilation to the lowest level. If you will be away on holiday for an extended period, it is best to turn off the ventilation. You can open the windows at any time in Minergie buildings, but this is not actually necessary to ensure good air quality in the rooms.
Be economical with water
In Switzerland, people consume an average of around 50 liters of hot water each day, which equates to almost 15% of the energy consumption for the household. Use the following tips to save water and electricity at home.
- Take a shower instead of a bath
A quick shower is much more economical than a bath: Filling the bathtub with hot water requires five kilowatt hours of energy. That's enough to power an e-bike trip from Basel to Paris.
- Use eco fittings
Use efficiency class A fittings and showerheads in the kitchen and bathroom to reduce water consumption by up to 50%. Modern flow controllers can simply be screwed into the fittings instead of the old aerators and the water flow is still perfectly nice.
Disconnect plugs: Take care with electrical appliances
A lot of energy is lost when devices are kept in standby mode. An estimated two billion kilowatt hours of electricity (10% of total usage) is wasted in Swiss households.
- Switch off devices completely
Most devices are only actively used for one to two hours per day. They often use less power when active than they do during the rest of the time that they spend in standby mode. The biggest standby sinners are generally devices that are connected to a PC, such as printers or modems, and coffee machines. These devices can be completely disconnected from the power supply using a power strip.
- Switch to LED bulbs
Whether it's within your own four walls or on the street: LED bulbs are a must when it comes to efficient lighting. LED technology sets new standards for energy efficiency, quality, and service life. LED bulbs also protect the environment and your wallet. With just a few exceptions, there is an LED solution for every lighting feature in your household.
- Intelligent cooking and washing
Our grandparents knew how to save a lot of electricity using various simple measures. Here is a reminder of some old and new tips:
- Bringing water to the boil uses up to 50% less energy if you use a kettle.
- Always fill the dishwasher completely.
- When cooking, put a lid on the pan to reduce energy consumption by 30%.
- Don't put cookware into the fridge while it is still hot.
- Dry your laundry in the sun instead of in the tumble dryer.
- You can bake cakes and bread without preheating the oven. This reduces energy consumption by around 20%.
- Choose green electricity
We can all choose what electricity we want from our electricity supplier. You should therefore opt for green electricity with the "naturemade star" label. The "naturemade star" quality label is used for energy that is produced in a particularly environmentally friendly way.
(Source: BFE, analysis of Swiss energy consumption by purpose in 2019, excluding heating and hot water)