Green Living

How to Reduce Your Household Energy Use: Start With an Energy Monitor


How to Reduce Your Household Energy Use: Start With an Energy Monitor

To reduce your household energy consumption, start with an energy monitor.

If you have been following the news lately you’ll know that the arrival of January power bills has led to a lot of unhappy surprises.

Although we don’t heat our home with electricity, I know the stress of receiving a power bill that seems out of whack.

The feeling is similar each time we receive our Home Energy Report from NB Power. We have always been aware of our monthly energy use and realised that we weren’t doing as well as we thought when the reports started arriving.

We have our theories about why our energy use is higher than we think it should be – two teens who love long showers, a giant chest freezer in the basement that’s almost empty – but those are just guesses. Because of this, it seems like our monthly power bill (and the Home Energy Report), are more like credit card bills with a balance owing but without any itemized information. We know what our bill is each month but we really have no idea what in our home consumes the most power and without that information it’s difficult to know where to begin to reduce our consumption.

How to Reduce Your Household Energy Use: Start With an Energy Monitor

Nexgen, a local renewable energy company, has installed an energy monitor and over the next few months we’ll be able to track our home energy use. Based on the real-time data that we’re now able to gather, Nexgen will provide guidance on the most effective changes we can make to reduce our home energy consumption.

All of the data is tracked on our phones with easy-to-follow graphs that instantly show what’s causing energy use to increase or to decrease and the associated cost of our energy use. We’ll be able to figure out how much energy our kids’ showers are using, if our chest freezer really is an energy hog and likely a few energy use surprises.

Our goal is to get from “good” to “great” on our Home Energy Report.

Nexgen is providing the energy monitor gratis and every month I’ll share what we have learned about our home energy use and what we’re doing to use less.

I know that not everyone has been wild about the NB Power Home Energy Reports, but for us they have been an eye opener and the motivation for making a change. Thanks to the report we became more aware of our energy use and now it’s time to get going with what the report is intended to do – encourage home owners to reduce our energy use.

You can now receive your home energy report by email instead of paper. Log into your NB Power account and click “My Account” to change your report to a paperless setting.


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