Energy Crisis in Europe: Optimizing a Building from 4.5 to 2.4 MWh

With the war in the Ukraine, energy prices in Europe reached new record levels. This initially affected the gas price which does not affect me directly. But it had a big impact on the price for electrical energy too. In my village, the price for electrical energy is now at 0.45 CHF/kWh, starting October 1st 2022. It is twice as much as what it used to be, and three times more what it used to be the price for the energy at night time.

Saving energy always makes a lot of sense, now even more, both for the environment and directly saving money. Luckily, I started thinking about optimizing the electrical energy used in my house back in 2021, and now in 2022 it really pays off: The daily average of 16 kWh/day (including heating and cooling) came down to 7 kWh/day, or from 4.5 MWh/year down to 2.4 MWh/year, or a reduction of 47%.

There were different areas contributing to this very positive result:

The above graph shows the changes in the different categories, from 2021 (blue, 4.5 MWh) to 2022 (orange, 2.4 MWh).

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3D Printed Mounting Bridge for Feller Smart Light Control for Philips Hue

The company Feller sells a wall mountable ‘Smart Light Control’: this provides 4 push buttons compatible with the Philips Hue system (on, off, dimming, etc). Unlike many other remote controls and buttons it is a great design and available in different colors. Feller does have a ‘classic’ wall switch series too, so this one is perfect to replace or augment an existing installation and make it ‘smart’.

Feller Smart Light Control

Feller Smart Light Control

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Building a DIY High Density Philips Hue LED Stripe

Philips Hue Smart LED stripes are great, but they have a disadvantage: the LED density is rather low: one LED cluster (WW, RGB, CW) every 55 mm. This leads to the problem that individual dots might be visible if the LED stripe is directly visible. Even if the LED stripe is used for indirect ambient light it means that individual dots might still be visible on the wall or ceiling. The solution is to create a ‘high density’ Hue smart LED stripe:

Normal vs High Density Philips Hue LED Stripe

Normal vs High Density Philips Hue LED Stripe

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