Rising rents or hefty mortgage repayments mean that every little saving counts towards balancing the household budgets. Pinergy Pay As You Go (PAYG) energy billing is one way to alleviate these financial strains.
PAYG billing does not change the power supply but rather gives you complete control of how you use your supply of power. Because PAYG electricity uses the latest smart meter technology you get real-time updates on your usage.
At Pinergy we have an In-Home Display (IHD) unit and the Pinergy Smart App that allow you to view your data in a timely and transparent manner. The biggest benefit of this access to information is the ability to change your usage habits to reduce your energy consumption, lower your carbon footprint and ultimately make some savings on your utility bills.
DIGGING INTO THE DATA
Your IHD unit updates every 10 seconds to give you a genuinely real-time account of your energy consumption. This in turn will update your Smart App with your account information.
You can use both devices to compare weekly or monthly periods of consumption.
You can also see daily, weekly and monthly usage in euros spent, kWh used and CO2 emissions produced.
PUTTING PAYG ENERGY INTO PRACTICE
If you notice a jump in your usage or bill for a period, you could do two things to try and identify what contributed to the rise.
- Use your IHD to view the half-hourly rate of consumption to see if/when a spike occurred during the day.
- Use the Pinergy Smart App to compare that week and/or month’s performance with the previous period.
By doing this, you should be able to see if a spike in your bill was related to a moment (was there a bouncy castle plugged in for a few hours during a child’s birthday party?) or a gradual trend over a period (are people leaving lights on?).
POSSIBLE POWER DRAINS
For years there was speculation that chargers for smartphones, handheld games and other gadgets left plugged in without a device charging was costing people money.
However, the companies providing the devices seem to have improved their chargers, so they don’t use power unless they are connected to a device.
While the issue of cost may have been removed, we would still recommend people unplug anything that doesn’t need to be connected to the power supply for safety reasons if nothing else.
There are other electrical appliances that, without a little monitoring, can cause an unnecessary jump in your electricity bill.
Here is a list of our top eight offenders that contribute to a power drain and how they can cost you money.
Every room in every building has them. Lighting can account for 20% of your yearly electricity costs. If you are still using incandescent bulbs you are spending more money on lighting than you need to. Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL) or Light-Emitting Diodes (LED) will reduce your energy consumption and save you money. Both can be more expensive to purchase than an old fashioned incandescent bulb, but they do last longer and use less power. LEDs are more expensive than CFLs, but again, they should last longer. You can check out our Pinergy LED Package if you want to start saving money from today.
2. LEAVING THINGS ON
Regardless of the lightbulbs you use, leaving lights on after you’ve left the room will cost you money. The same could apply for any other device left on or plugged in when you are not using it.
Without getting deep into the detail, refrigeration is a process of removing heat from an area to make it colder. The colder the setting you have on your fridge the harder the appliance needs to work to keep it cool. This of course means you are using more electricity. If the fridge is not that full it won’t need to be as cold as a fridge full of food and drinks. So, when the house is vacated for the family holidays, for example, don’t forget to adjust the fridge settings.
Another bad habit with fridges is leaving the door open for longer than needed. The LA Times reported that people spend about 10 hours a year staring into their fridge!
Some larger homes require an additional chest freezer to the fridge freezer in the kitchen. These also require a lower setting when there’s not much in them. Consider turning it off if it’s going to be empty for an extended period.
5. HOT WATER
This is a double-barrelled issue.
- Using hot water wastefully means your tank will refill and the boiler will kick into action again. Reducing time in the shower (once you’re clean of course) and filling the sink to do the dishes (rather than just leaving the tap running) will reduce the energy your boiler needs and reduce your power bill if it runs on electricity.
- Some washing machines and dishwashers are piped with cold water only, meaning the machine must heat it during the cleaning cycle. This is where most of the energy is used by the appliance. Make sure you have a full load in when putting these into use and choose a lower temperature option where possible.
If you are reheating meals, use the microwave rather than the oven. It’ll be quicker and cheaper.
This is one of the most energy-intensive appliances in the house. If possible, try and air dry the garments and linens before putting them in the dryer. This will reduce the amount of time this appliance needs to be operational.
8. APPLIANCE ENERGY RATINGS
The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) provides an appliance rating system that goes from dark green (A) to red (G). As you might expect dark green A+, A++ and A+++ rated appliances are much more energy-efficient than B – G rated appliances. Higher rated machines may be more expensive, but they will save you money in the long run through your energy bills.
If you would like to find out more about how Pinergy can save you money through our Pay As You Go smart metering, why not get in touch with us today?
You can fill out the contact form on our contact details page or give us a call.