The Africa energy Efficiency guide is your indispensable tool to saving energy in your home and reducing your cost of doing business in Uganda.
Energy Efficiency (EE) is an inescapable part of the solution to Africa’s sustainable development; its
improvements can result in cost-effective ways that can contribute to economic and social
development as well as environmental sustainability.
EE impacts positively on many global & local topical issues, such as: energy demand management,
energy security, industrial development, local air pollution, climate change, consumer welfare, energy
poverty, jobs creation, etc. Specifically, EE improvements offer multiple opportunities and benefits:
reducing energy waste, reducing need for investment in new energy infrastructure and facilities and
thus saving money, lowering production costs, improving clean energy access, reducing health risks,
increasing competiveness, and paving the way for a most energy efficient and low carbon economy.
Right in your own home, you have the power to save money and energy. Saving energy will reduce Africa's overall demand for resources needed to make energy, and increasing your energy efficiency is like adding another clean energy source to Africa's electric power grid.
This Africa Energy Efficiency guide shows you how easy it is to cut your energy use from your home,
on the road to your Business Premices.
In this Energy Savers Guide you will find information about:
The easy,practical solutions for saving energy include tips you can use today.
They are good for your wallet and for the environment—and actions that you take help reduce Africa's needs to produce or
import more energy, thereby improving our energy security.
Easy low-cost and no-cost ways to save energy in Africa:
Install a programmable thermostat to lower utility bills and manage your heating
and cooling systems efficiently.
Air dry dishes instead of using your dishwasher’s drying cycle.
Turn things off when you are not in the room such as lights, TVs,
entertainment systems, and your computer and monitor.
Plug home electronics, such as TVs and DVD players, into power strips; turn the power strips off when the equipment
is not in use—TVs and DVDs in standby mode still use several watts of power.
Lower the thermostat on your water heater to 120°F/48.9°C.
Take short showers instead of baths and use low-flow showerheads for additional energy savings.
Wash only full loads of dishes and clothes in your Washing Machines.
Air dry/ Sun dry your clothes and avoid wasting Energy/Electricity from your Washing Machine.
Check to see that windows and doors are closed when heating or cooling your home.
Drive sensibly; aggressive driving such as speeding, and rapid acceleration and braking, wastes fuel.
How to save Energy when Heating and Cooling your African Home
Heating and cooling your home uses more energy and costs more money than any other system in your
home—typically making up about 54% of your utility bill.
No matter what kind of heating and cooling system you have in your house,
you can save money and increase your comfort by properly maintaining and upgrading your equipment.
By combining proper equipment maintenance and upgrades with recommended insulation, air sealing, and
thermostat settings, you can cut your energy use for heating and
cooling—and reduce environmental emissions—from 20%-50%.
Heating and Cooling Tips for Africa
Set your programmable thermostat as low as is comfortable in the winter and as high as is
comfortable in the summer, as well as when you’re sleeping or away from home.
Clean or replace filters on furnaces and air condi-tioners once a month or as recommended.
Clean warm-air registers, baseboard heaters, and radiators as needed; make sure they’re not blocked by furniture,
Eliminate trapped air from hot-water radiators once or twice a season; if unsure about how to perform this task,
contact a professional.
Place heat-resistant radiator reflectors between exterior walls and the radiators.
Turn off kitchen, bath, and other exhaust fans within 20 minutes after you are done cooking or bathing;
when replacing exhaust fans, consider installing high-efficiency, low-noise models.
During winter, keep the draperies and shades on your south-facing windows open during the
day to allow the sunlight to enter your home and closed at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.
During summer, keep the window coverings closed during the day to block the sun’s heat.
Water heating is the second largest energy expense in your home.
It typically accounts for about 18% of your utility bill. There are four ways to cut your water heating bills:
use less hot water, turn down the thermostat on your water heater, insulate your water heater, or buy a new,
more efficient model.
Africa Water Heating Tips
Install aerating, low-flow faucets and showerheads.
Repair leaky faucets promptly; a leaky faucet wastes gallons of water in a short period of time.
Set the thermostat on your water heater to 120°F/48.9°C to get comfortable hot water for most uses.
Insulate your electric hot-water storage tank but be careful not to cover the thermostat.
Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Insulate your natural gas or oil hot-water storage tank but be careful not to cover the water heater’s top,
bottom, thermostat, or burner compartment. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations; when in doubt, get professional help.
Insulate the first 6 feet of the hot and cold water pipes connected to the water heater.
If you are in the market for a new dishwasher or clothes washer, consider buying an efficient,
water-saving ENERGY STAR® model to reduce hot water use. See the Appliances section for more information.
Install heat traps on the hot and cold pipes at the water heater to prevent heat loss.
Most new water heaters have built-in heat traps.
Drain a quart of water from your water tank every 3 months to remove sediment that
impedes heat transfer and lowers the efficiency of your heater. Follow the manufacturer’s directions.
Although most water heaters last 10-15 years, it’s best to start shopping now for a new one
if yours is more than 7 years old. Doing some research before your heater fails will enable you to select
one that most appropriately meets your needs.
Financing is also available for African Businesses, Schools, Hospitals, Large Real Estate Properties/Homes and Governments who are serious
about acquiring our energy saving LED Lighting solutions.
How to save Energy with your Appliances in Africa
Appliances account for about 13% of your household’s energy costs, with refrigeration, cooking,
and laundry at the top of the list.
When you’re shopping for appliances, think of two price tags.
The first one covers the purchase price—think of it as a down payment.
The second price tag is the cost of operating the appliance during its lifetime.
You’ll be paying on that second price tag every month with your utility bill for the next 10 to 20 years,
depending on the appliance. Refrigerators last an average of 12 years;
clothes washers about 11 years; dishwashers about 10 years; and room air conditioners last about 9 years.
The ENERGY STAR® Logo
The ENERGY STAR logo is on all qualified products that meet specific standards for energy efficiency.
ENERGY STAR-qualified products exceed the federal minimum standards for efficiency and quality—sometimes signifi-cantly.
Look for the label on appliances, electronics, water heaters, windows, and other products that consume
energy in your home.
How to save Energy Money with your Home Office and Electronics in Africa
Many people work from home at least one day per week.
Working from home saves energy and time by cutting out the commute,
but it may increase your home energy bills unless you use energy-saving office equipment.
ENERGY STAR-labeled office equipment is widely available. It can provide dramatic energy savings—as much as
90% savings for some products. Overall, ENERGY STAR-labeled office products use about half the
electricity of standard equipment.
Be sure to shop for ENERGY STAR® Office Products from Computers, Copiers, Fax machines, Monitors,
Multifunction devices (fax, scanner, and copier), Printers and Scanners.
Home Office Energy Tips for Africa
Selecting energy-efficient office equipment and turning off
machines when they are not in use can result in significant energy savings.
Using an ENERGY STAR-labeled computer can save 30%-65% energy than computers
without this designation, depending on usage.
Spending a large portion of time in low-power mode not only saves energy but
helps equipment run cooler and last longer.
Putting your laptop AC adapter on a power strip that can be turned off (or will turn off automatically)
can maximize savings; the transformer in the AC adapter draws power continuously,
even when the laptop is not plugged into the adapter.
Using the power management settings on computers and monitors can cause significant savings.
It is a common misperception that screen savers reduce a monitor’s energy use.
Use automatic switching to sleep mode or simply turn it off.
Another misperception, carried over from the days of older mainframe computers,
is that equipment lasts longer if it is never turned off.
Consider buying a laptop for your next computer upgrade; laptops use much less energy than desktop computers.
How Renewable Energy can reduce your Electric Bill in Africa
You have many options for using renewable energy at home including solar panels and small wind turbines.
Solar panels are the most popular form of renewable energy today. You can use them to generate heat,
electricity, and indoor and outdoor light.
Renewable Energy Tips for your Home and Business in Africa
Installing solar-powered outdoor pathway lights is one of the easiest ways to use solar energy at home.
Heating water is a great use of solar power (see the Water Heating section).
If you have a swimming pool or hot tub, you can use solar power to cut pool heating costs.
Most solar pool heating systems are cost competitive with conventional systems
and have very low operating costs. It’s actually the most cost-effective use of solar energy.
If you’ve already made your home as energy efficient as possible, and you still have high electricity bills
and have access to a good solar resource, you might want to consider generating your
own electricity with a solar power system. Solar panels can be easily installed onto ground- or roof-mounted racks,
and new products are available that integrate solar cells with the roof,
making them much less visible than older systems.