FAQ

How does the website carbon calculator work?

Please see our ‘How does it work?‘ page for details.

How is v3 different to v2?

The v3 methodology was launched on Earth Day 2022 (22nd April) and uses newer data. The results produced report lower emissions for websites tested, reflecting that the infrastructure of the web and global power grids have become more efficient over time.

If you have tested your web pages prior to 22nd April 2022 and recorded a result and now want to test your improvements, testing using the v3 version will not be a like for like comparison. If you need to run a test using the older v2 methodology, this is possible using the API. Please askĀ  us for details.

Why does the test fail on my website?

We sometimes have trouble testing a url. This is generally for one of two reasons:

  1. If your website is very slow, the test may time out.
  2. If there are routing issues in your DNS settings, it can make it impossible for our test to load the page

Please check your load times and DNS settings before asking us to investigate a failed test.

I use green hosting, but your test says I don’t. Why?

Sometimes we cannot detect green hosting for the following reasons:

  1. If your hosting provider has not registered the IP address of your server with The Green Web Foundation, we will not be able to detect it. Please check with your hosting provider to see if this is the case.
  2. If you are using a CDN, then we will not be able to identify the IP address of your main web host and the test will judge the CDN provider as the host.
  3. Occasionally, we may not be able to obtain results for The Green Web Foundation API, in which case the test will state that the website appears to be using bog standard energy. When this happens, it is only ever temporary so try testing again the next day.

I changed my website but the test results don’t change. Why not?

We cache test results for up to a year to reduce energy consumption. If you are making changes to a website and testing each time, you won’t see any difference unless you click the “Test again” link at the top of your results page. This will then trigger a new test and you’ll get a new result straight away. This helps minimise the number of requests on the server, which is more energy efficient.

Please note that if you have the Website Carbon badge installed on your website, the badge is only cached for 7 days. As a result, the badge and the website may not always give the same result as they can be reporting tests conducting on different dates.

Can I test private urls?

It depends on how you define private. You can test pages that are blocked from search engines, so long as they can be accessed without a password. Please be cautious testing these as every test will generate a public, search engine indexable results page (see below about deleting such pages).

We cannot test pages protected by a password or on a local server. However, the carbon calculator code is open source so please do feel free to contribute a solution if this is something that you need.

Are test results public?

Yes, when you submit a url for testing, it generates a public report with the results.

Can you delete my test results?

If you have submitted a test and do not want the results public, then we have a simple policy.

  1. If you tested a private development url by accident (please don’t do it on purpose) and need to delete the public results page, please get in touch and we will delete the record as soon as we can.
  2. If you have tested a public url, we will not delete the results.

Can I add a badge to my website?

Yes, please find details on our badge page.

Do you have an API?

We do have a website carbon API. Please check this page to find out more.

Can you conduct a more detailed sustainability audit?

Yes. Website Carbon is a public tool for general testing. If you would like a more in-depth digital sustainability analysis, please get in touch with our team at Wholegrain Digital and we would be happy to discuss your requirements.

I have a question that isn’t answered here.

If you have any other questions or need help with something specific, send us an email at: [email protected]. Please note that we get a lot of emails and as this is a free tool, we are not able to reply to all enquiries.

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