Innovative Electrical Ideas For Your Home

Innovative Electrical Ideas For Your Home

When designing and decorating a new home or an existing one, there are ideas that run into everyone’s head. From where to put the windows placed, paint colour to use, to perfect flooring, there are many ideas to implement. What most people forget are the electrical ideas that could also add a fine touch to your home décor and improve efficiency. 

The modern home relies heavily on appliances and electronic devices. With coffee makers, air conditioners, television, and other devices, your home can get cramped up and messy. So, you need to come up with innovative electrical ideas for home to improve your space efficiency. Here are some of the best creative electrical ideas you can select from: 

Create A Charging Station 

Nothing can make your home look disorganised like having cords all over the room. To avoid this problem, you need to create a charging station. If you don’t have a place dedicated for charging devices only, then you will have dealt with the problem of tangled cords and frequent loss of electronics. Imagine being in a hurry, and you can’t remember where you left the power bank? That can be frustrating. But with a charging station, all devices can be found in there. 

Outlets with USB Ports 

Almost every device we use today has a USB port for charging. Therefore, you can make your home a bit more efficient by simply installing electrical outlets that have USB ports. With multiple outlets with USB placed strategically in the house, you will be able to deal with cord problems in the house. You will have your devices charging directly from the outlet. What this does is that you will be able to deal with devices piling in one place in the house. You will also make your home look presentable and neat. 

Smart Lighting System 

Gone are days when the only lighting system was manual. That’s where you had to turn off lights manually. The smart system is one of the latest advancements in the lighting system. With this system, you will be able to use the remote control to operate your lighting system. You can also schedule and automate how your lights work. Do you know that a smart lighting system can operate through smartphone apps? Well, it is one of the brilliant electrical ideas for home. 

Mood Lighting 

Another innovative electrical idea for your home is using mood lighting. This is a system of lighting that enables you to control the amount of light in the house. For example, if you are watching a movie in the house, you dim lights to make the environment healthier. What you need is to install dimmer switches in the house. Apart from the living, you can have dimmer switches in the bedroom and bathroom. 

interior lighting

Motion and Automatic Lights 

We are now at a time when the planet is experiencing massive degradation. Global warming is also hitting our planet hard because of the ever-increasing greenhouse gas emissions. But you can make the earth safer by installing motion and automated lights. The system works with the use of movement and door activated lighting. So, whenever you open the kitchen door, closet or baths, the lights will automatically go on. It is more efficient than the traditional system and helps reduce the amount of energy burnt to light your home. 

LED Lights 

Do you want higher quality lighting in the house and still promote environmental conservation? Well, you just need to replace your old lights with the new LED options. LED light bulbs are more energy-efficient; hence they use minimal energy to provide higher quality lighting. Therefore, less energy is burned to light your house. This means you will be reducing your carbon footprint with the installation of the LED lights. You will also be spending less money on better quality lighting.  

Interior Lighting 

Apart from the ordinary light in the house, you can improve your space by installing accent lights. These lights are not necessarily meant to light up the home but add some interior aesthetics to it. You can have these lights install strategically in the home where they will make an impact. A good place for accent lights is under the cabinets in the kitchen or your study room. These lights can also illuminate dark areas when you turn off the main bulbs.  

Surge protectors 

Another innovative electrical idea for your home is adding a surge protector. These are electrical devices that protect your appliances and electronic devices from electrical damages. Power surges are common, especially if you are using grid electricity. Without proper protection, you are likely to get device damages.  

Whether you are constructing a new home or renovating an existing one, these are some of the best electrical ideas for a home. Try them, and your home will become more efficient and cost-effective to run.  

Smart Ways To Slash Your Electricity Bills

Smart Ways To Slash Your Electricity Bills

Electricity bills take the largest share of expenses for most homes in Australia. With high energy-consuming appliances such as water heaters, air conditioning units, and so on, you can expect to digger deeper into the pocket to keep them running. But what most homeowners don’t know is that you can reduce energy bills without compromising things in your home. 

There are many smart energy-saving tips that can help you reduce the electricity bills you pay every month. Most of these energy-saving tips are just common sense. Therefore, some of these hacks will cost you nothing. You just need to change how you do things. In this guide, we rounded 10 ways to save up on electricity bills without affecting things in your home. 

1. Turn off light You’re Not Using 

This is a no-brainer measure that will help you cut energy bills a significant amount. If you just keep your lights on even when you are not using them, then you are adding unnecessary costs to your electricity bills.

Unfortunately, this is one of the most common mistakes people make. If you are watching a movie in the living room during the night, you don’t need to have lights on in the bedroom. Similarly, when leaving the house, turn off all lights. 

2. Use Energy-Saving Bulbs 

If you are still using the old-style bulbs, then you need to replace then with energy-saving LED bulbs. Unlike the traditional bulbs, LEDs use very little energy and produce brighter light. By just upgrading your bulbs the LED option, you will see a significant drop in your energy bills. In addition to that, it is important to note that energy-saving light bulbs last longer hence saving money off replacements. 

3. Cut On Light Use 

Most of the homes have a light system that is not controlled. The main reason is that most homeowners are not aware of dimmers to reduce energy consumption. With light dimmers, you can increase the number of watts consumed by your bulbs. Similarly, you can decrease bulb wattage to reduce the overall consumption of electricity. Another way that you can cut on light use is by installing a sensor for outdoor lights to only turn on when needed. All these are cost-effective ways of slashing electricity bills. 

4. Adjust Thermostat 

electric light bulb installation

Air conditioners are some major consumers of electricity in your home. If you can get rid of these appliances, you will be shocked by how much your energy bills will reduce. But you can still have your home air-conditioned at a minimal cost. During summer, you can have the thermostat set at 25 °C or high. That means the room will be kept cool and, at the same time, save you a lot of money off the energy bills in the long run. 

5. Replace Air Filter Regularly 

One of the mistakes that homeowners make is failing to replace their AC filters after three months as recommended. When your air conditioning unit is running on clogged filters, it works harder than normal. This means it will consume more energy to air-condition in the same room. But to reduce this unnecessary cost, replace your air filters as recommended. It is also important to check them regularly for clogs, especially during summer. 

6. Maintain Your Appliances 

Poor maintenance of your appliances or lack of it could be the reason why you have very high energy bills. When your appliances such as water heaters, fridges, and air conditioners are poorly maintained, their efficiency will automatically drop. This means they will be consuming more energy than normal to do the same work. So, if you observe your appliances’ maintenance schedule, then you will significantly reduce energy wastage. That translates to reduced energy bills and reduced carbon footprint. So, maintenance is good for the environment. 

7. Upgrade to Programmable Thermostat 

If you are still using the old-style thermostat for your HVAC system, then you could be wasting electrical energy unnecessarily. What you need is an upgrade to the modern programmable electronic thermostat. These are advanced devices that will automatically set your power consumption to energy-saving levels. The thermostat will automatically turn off the water heating and cooling system when you reach the desired room condition. Some of these thermostats are app-compatible; hence you can control appliances from the smartphone when away from home. 

8. Unplug Appliance When Not In Use 

If you are not watching TV, doing laundry, or using a microwave, don’t put them in ‘standby’ mode. While in this mode, they will still be consuming electricity. So, for all the appliances that are not in use, you should unplug them. When you have your machine still have that standby light on, then you should know that it is consuming some watts. Even if the consumption may be termed negligible, it will cost you at the end of the day. 

9. Buy Appliances With An Energy Rating 

The energy rating is one of the techniques that are helping homeowners reduce their energy bills. The rating is all about buying appliances that consume very little energy and still deliver the same results. With the home appliances being the major consumer of electrical energy in our, you should invest in models that offer good energy rating. The higher the energy rating of the appliance, the higher the efficiency. This means the appliance consumes less energy, hence saving you money and reducing the global warming problem. 

10. Use Natural Light 

Last but not least way to save up on electricity bills is using natural light. If you are used to keeping lights on during the day, then that’s an unnecessary waste of electrical energy. You can simply use natural light to light up the rooms during the day. What you need is to remove curtains, and if the windows are small, consider enlarging them. It is one of the easiest ways to reduce electricity.  

If you were wondering how you can save up on electricity bills, these are 10 smart tips for you. Most of these tips will not cost anything but just a change in your habits. 

How To Calculate The Electrical Usage On Your Own

How To Calculate The Electrical Usage On Your Own

Having doubts about the electricity bills is not unusual. It is something that most homeowners feel when they receive high monthly bills than expected. And you could be right because sometimes, the utility company can get it wrong when calculating your energy bills. But you can clear these doubts by calculating the electricity usage on your own. 

It is not difficult to learn how to read your electrical consumption. What you need is to learn a few hacks on how to figure out your energy usage for all your appliances and other electronic devices. Although technology is making it easy to estimate electric energy consumption, you can do a little calculation with a pen and paper and get quick results at zero cost. 

In this guide, we are providing you with some of the best tips on how to calculate electrical usage using an appliance-by-appliance breakdown. Here are the 5 main steps you should follow: 

Step 1: Find Wattage Of Your Devices 

The first step to calculating the electricity usage on your own is finding the wattage of all electrical devices in the house. That includes bulbs, microwaves, fridge, water heater, and air condition, among others. This is a pretty simple exercise because most manufacturers ensure that wattage figures on their products are easily seen.  

All machines have a label listing how many watts devices use. Most of the labels are either on the back or bottom of the device. If you cannot find the label anywhere on the device, then you need to look for its user manual, since these documents come with all the technical information about the product.  

If you can’t find the manual, check the manufacturer website. You can also contact the manufacturer. Any number that ends with “W” is what you should be looking for. If there is a range of wattage, take the largest number. 

Step 2: Find Out The Electrical Energy Used Per Day 

Now that you have the wattage of all appliances and other devices listed, the next step should be calculating electrical energy usage per day. What you have collected as of now is the energy usage per hour. This step should also be pretty simple because you have already done the hard work. The most important thing is the number of hours that the device is used per day. 

From your list, estimate the number of hours that each device. For example, how many hours do you watch TV? How many hours in a day do you use your microwave? Similarly, you need to know how many hours you use each bulb. That’s because security bulbs will have longer hours of use compared to your bedroom ones.  

Then multiply the number of hours used for each device with the watts. For example, if your coffee maker wattage is 1200W and you use for 3 hours in a day, then the electrical energy used per day is 1200W X 3 hours. This will give 3600Wh per day. Use the same formula for all other appliances and electronic devices. 

woman at home with electricity and convenience

Step 3: Convert Watts to kilowatts 

With the watts per day, now it’s time to convert daily energy consumption into kilowatts. This step is crucial because electrical energy consumption is measured in kilowatt. One kilowatt is equivalent to 1000 watts. So, to calculate kilowatts-hour for every device on your list, you just need to divide the watt-hour per day with 1000. 

Using our coffee maker as an example, we need to divide the 3600Wh by 1000. This should give us 3.6kWh. So, this means that the coffee maker consumes 3.6kWh per day. Use the same formula on all the other devices on your list. 

Step 4: Determine Kilowatts per month 

With the kWh consumption per day for every device, the next thing you need to do is to calculate monthly electrical energy consumption. This is pretty easy since you have all the figures that you need. All you have to do is to multiply the daily kWh for every device with 30 days. 

Using the coffee maker’s example, you need to multiply 3.6kW by 30 days (3.6kwh x 30). This should give you an electrical energy consumption of 33.6kWh per month for our coffee maker. Do the same for all other devices. 

Step 5: Figure the Monthly energy cost 

This should be the last stage of calculating the electricity usage on your own. All you have to do is to multiply the monthly kWh consumption for every device with the cost of one kWh to get the estimated monthly energy cost per device.  

If the utility company sells one kWh at 15 cents, then using our coffee maker example, we need to multiple 33.6kWh by 15 cents (33.6kWh x $0.15=$5.04). So, the $5.04 is the electrical energy cost of running the coffee maker or 30 days. Use this formula for all devices and add the costs to get the estimated electrical bill for your home.  

That’s how you can simply estimate your electricity bill. Although the final figure could have a margin of error, it will be enough to clear doubts on your electrical usage. 

How Home Electrical System Works

How Home Electrical System Works

Electricity is one of the essential components of modern homes. Every home today needs electrical energy for lights, water heater, air-cons, television, computers, and other gadgets. But how does the home electrical system work? Most people only know how to turn off and on lights, sockets but can’t explain how their electrical system works. 

Your home’s electrical system may appear quite mysterious, especially if you don’t have electrical knowledge, but it’s not. You will be surprised to learn that this system works the same way as water flows through your plumbing pipes. In this guide, we are going to demystify the home electrical system by expounding on how it works. 

Electrical Power Supply (Transformers) 

Most homes in Australia have electrical power supply from the grid. Electricity supply in Australia is operated by a utility company. These companies have power plants that generated electrical energy in high voltage. That’s why they have transformers along the supply line to drop voltage when connecting to your home.  

The main supply line from the plant may be carrying 11, 000 Volts (11kv). This is too much power for homes that equipment and appliances that use 120 or 240v. That’s why the utility company install transformers in your neighbourhoods that drop this voltage from 11kv to 120/240 (single-phase) or 415v (for 3-phase) supply.  

Depending on your electrical needs, you can have a three-phase or single-phase power supply into your home. In addition to that, the supply cable to your home may be underground using trenches or overhead using poles.  

The Electrical Meter 

To monitor your energy consumption, the utility company will install an electrical meter for your home. The use of the meter is to monitor the number of watts you are consuming. This is the device that the company will come to check when preparing your electricity bills. The choice of the meter depends on the type of electrical system you are using. If you have a 3-phase system, the meter will be different from a single-phase one. However, most homes in Australia have a single-phase system. 

Although today most of the homes have a smart meter, a while back, we had analogue devices. You could see the dial turning as your appliances consume electricity. By then, utility companies would send their staff to homes for the meter reading. Today, we have smart meters managed using the software. You just need to buy tokens to get more kilowatts for your use. 

Electric meters in a row measuring power use. Electricity consum

Main Control Panel 

This probably the first thing that most people know about their home electrical system, especially if they have an underground power supply cable. After the supply line enters the meter, the outlet from the meter goes to the panel. One of the major roles of the panel is to control electrical power by installing gadgets that regulate the flow of electrical current. That’s why it is mostly referred to as the central breaker panel because it houses the main circuit breaker.  

The panel is mainly distributing power to your home through various circuits. The panel separates various circuits with each line flowing from the circuit breaker. The rating of the circuit breaker is determined by the load being powered. For light, the circuit breaker is usually 10 amperes, while fridge circuit breakers may be 32 amperes.  

All circuit breakers in the panel work as a fuse that disconnects electricity flow when the current approaches dangerous levels. So, they protect your appliance and other electronic gadgets from damages. That’s why every circuit has a different break rating depending on the load. 

Circuits 

Electrical circuits are the lines in which the electric current flows from the panel to the appliance. This what most people refer to as the wiring system in the house. The wires run from the panels’ circuit breaker to the appliances. Every circuit power a specific appliance. For example, a water heater and air conditioner should have a dedicated circuit each. This helps to minimise damages in case of an electrical problem. 

Most homes work with single-phase electric supply, which has three wires- Active, neutral, and earth. In Australia, the colour coding is different from other countries. The active wire is brown in colour, neutral blue, and earth wire striped green and yellow. Learning colour coding is important, especially for those who would like to use DIY tips to fix electrical issues in their homes. 

Switches 

For the circuit system to be complete, you need to have switches. These are the accessories that help you to control your appliances and other devices. They are designed to break the flow of electrical current in the live wire. A good example is the light switches that control lighting in the house. They are usually put in strategic positions where they are more effective in use. For example, there is a reason why all light switches are near the door. 

There are various kinds of switches, but the choice depends on your needs. If you just have one bulb to control, then you need a one-way single-pole switch. However, most homes are now moving from mechanical switches to smart switches. 

Sockets 

Sockets are the most used electrical accessories in our homes. Whether you want to charge your phone, computer to connect the TV, you need a socket outlet. Sockets are simply the accessories at the very end of our home electrical system. They are the main outlet accessories that feed most of the appliances in the house. There are all kinds of sockets, but the choice depends on your needs. If you have two appliances that you want to put in one corner of the house, you might need a double socket. 

That’s simply how the home electrical system works. From the transformer, electric current flows just like water in the house up to the sockets and then appliances. However, the most important thing is to maintain safety because electricity can be hazardous if not handled by a professional.