Find out Wattson
If you measure your energy use, you will find it easier to reduce it. There is a simple device called Wattson which does just that.
The Wattson system measures total electricity entering your house and displays this value on an easy to understand display. In your home, the electrical system will consist of several circuits, such as ring mains, lighting circuits, cooker circuit etc. These separate circuits are all connected together at the fusebox, and this is where Wattson measures the total electrical power entering your home. The amount of electricity being used at any one time, is displayed using numbers and colours.
The device will not just show how much electricity you are using, it will also record your usage history over a period of months. This will provide you with a deeper understanding of how you consume electricity use and how (if need be) you can reduce your consumption.
You can also view your power use at any moment expressed either in Watts or in Pounds Per Year – the pounds-per-year figure is calculated on the basis that everything is left as it is for the whole year. You will be able to see how much money appliances cost to run, and how much they cost when left on standby.
You may find your microwave costs you £50 a year just to tell the time and wait for you to ask it to do something.
Switching on a kettle will make the yearly figure jump by around £3,000. Nobody leaves a kettle on for a year. But this figure gives you a good reason to boil only as much water as you need rather than filling the kettle to the top, which takes six times as long to boil (and costs six times as much).
A 100W light bulb left on for a year will cost roughly £70, but if you replaced it with an 18W Low-energy light bulb with the same light output, then this would drop to about £12.60, saving you nearly £60 (again on the assumption that the light is left switched on year round)!
Wattson has been produced by the design group DIY KYOTO. They “value simple things, and seek to produce products of perfect convenience and utility, elegant in their conception and efficient in their operation.”
Wattson costs just £125. Your home will never be the same with it.