The issue of energy savings is now at the heart of household concerns, whether to reduce their electricity bill or for ecological reasons. One of the simplest daily actions to adopt to achieve these energy savings is to know the most energy-consuming appliances in the house and to unplug them when we are not using them.
Moreover, the electricity market is currently rather tense in Europe and particularly in France where the risks of blackout exist. The French government has even set up the tool for ecowatt power grid monitoring to prevent the risk of power cuts. However, a small table corner calculation makes it possible to estimate that the production of a nuclear reactor represents only about thirty watts for all homes in France! And 30W is just a few devices left on standby…and for nothing most of the time!
Let's discover them together and see the simple gestures that allow you to make great savings, up to a few hundred euros per year... and also reduce the risk of possible future cuts on the electricity network!
Why unplug appliances?
Many people are unaware of this, but when we leave our household appliances on standby, they continue to consume electricity. This consumption, which is called “parasitic standby”, represents approximately 11% of the annual electricity consumption of a household. This energy is purely and simply wasted, but it represents, at the end of the year, a significant sum on our electricity bill.
Based on Eurostat studies conducted in 2021, the average electricity consumption per person in a household can be estimated at around €500 to €600 per year, of which €55 to €66 is spent on appliances on standby. Getting into the good habit of unplugging unused devices allows a large family to save several hundred euros per year on their final bill!
Furthermore, it should be realized that this study was conducted before the surge in energy prices. Admittedly, tariff shield and price limitation measures for regulated tariffs have been put in place, but a Selectra study nevertheless estimates that between 2020 and 2023, households have experienced an increase in their bill of around 30 %. So you might as well adopt the right reflexes to limit breakage! But how to know if a device is using a lot of electricity and which one to unplug first? Let's take stock together.
Tips for knowing if your device consumes a lot of electricity
It's actually very easy to tell if your home appliance is consuming a lot of electricity. All you have to do is look at the energy label present on all the devices. Established in 1992, it is a legal obligation. If you no longer have this label, you can easily find the information on the internet. In any case, remember that the higher the power in watts or kilowatts (kW/h), the higher your consumption will be.
But having this raw data remains unclear for many people. It may therefore be interesting, to become aware of the state of the situation, to have a comparative overview of consumption by device. Here are two telling examples:
- a permanently lit box consumes as much as a washing machine used 200 times a year,
- whereas a game console turned on for 3 hours a day (or on standby 30 hours a day) consumes as much as an electric oven used three times a week to feed itself.
When you become aware of this level of consumption, you understand quite clearly the usefulness of unplugging your devices when you don't need them!
To help you track this consumption even more precisely, there are many ways, in particular by adopting connected devices or installing dedicated applications. It is thus possible to estimate or precisely measure the consumption of each device, to program automatic standby or even to remotely control the switching on or off of its electrical equipment if they are connected to the internet.
But then, what are the devices to unplug first?
The easiest way to see clearly is to take the question piece by piece. There are three main living spaces that consume energy: the kitchen, the living room and the bathroom.
If we look at the kitchen side, there is no shortage of household appliances: the oven, the hob, the hood, the refrigerator or even the dishwasher are all appliances that consume energy but are difficult or even impossible to disconnect. they are embedded. Concentrate therefore mainly on what is accessible and on small appliances such as the toaster, the coffee maker, the kettle or the microwave. However, your room for maneuver on this side is limited.
The living room and the multimedia
On the living room side, almost all appliances can be unplugged when not in use. Generally, households have a central connection with television, internet box and game console in the same place, so simply install a power strip with an on/off button to unplug everything with a simple click as soon as you go to bed or you leave your home!
In general, multimedia devices such as computers, tablets and smartphones are also very energy-intensive. To save energy, it is recommended that you unplug these devices when not in use. In addition, it is advisable to set the screen brightness to a minimum to reduce energy consumption and to charge them at night.
Finally, the bathroom is also a particularly energy-intensive place but unfortunately too often forgotten. The washing machine and the dryer are particularly energy-intensive appliances, whether at rest or in operation. It is therefore advisable to use the washing machine in off-peak hours and not to overload them and simply abandon the dryer and opt for natural drying in the open air. Again, unplugging appliances when they're done can save a lot of money.
Other appliances present in the bathroom are also energy-intensive, such as the hair dryer (mainly the old models, it is possible to opt for more recent models which consume up to three times less) and obviously the heater -water. For the latter, it is advisable to opt for a recent model with low energy consumption and to set it to an adequate temperature (around 55 degrees), which offers comfort without over-consuming.
By adopting eco-responsible behaviors in terms of energy, we can both do good for our bills and the planet. It's not complicated and just requires a little organization and simple daily gestures, such as unplugging your phone charger in the morning or switching off your box before going to bed. It is through collective sobriety on a daily basis and the fight against waste that we can find one of the main sources of energy saving, without this impacting our way of life. If you have any questions, feel free to visit the forum electricity savings