How to Calculate the Amount of Energy You Use

How to Calculate the Amount of Energy You UseThe impact the average person has on the environment is directly correlated to his or her use of resources and energy. You can control the amount of resources or energy you use by changing habits, buying different products and reducing the waste you produce. The first step is to know where and how you are using energy in your daily life.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Step 1
Start with transportation. Calculate how many gallons of gas you use by dividing your average daily mileage by your car's MPG. Gasoline is very energy dense. Try reducing your energy use by carpooling, taking public transit, or buying a more efficient car.
Step 2
Check your household energy use. The easiest way to do this is to check your utility bills. The electric bill and the gas and/or oil bill should both include a total monthly usage indicator.
Step 3
Use an online home-energy analyzer to check your average energy use. By inputting the size, type and location of your home as well as the types and quantity of appliances, these energy audit programs can give you a good overview of home energy consumption. See the Resource section for an example.
Step 4
Compare your home to other homes in your area to get an idea of how your energy usage compares to your neighbors. You can check this at the Home Energy Saver Web site.
Step 5
Conserve energy by replacing incandescent light bulbs with more energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs. Turn off appliances and electronics when not in use. Conserve hot water by taking shorter showers, using the quick cycle on the dish washer and washing clothes in cold water when possible. Install energy-saving windows, and limit the use of heating and air conditioning to when you are home.

Article Written By Jason Gordon

Jason Gordon is a professional writer and editor. In addition to online work, he has written for "Texas Highways," "AAA Southwest," "Glimpse," the "University of Washington Daily" and the "Dallas Morning News." Gordon's passions include animals, reading and finding the perfect pairings of pastry and espresso.

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