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Cooking Up an Energy-efficient Kitchen

  • 1 year ago

We’re all trying to save energy and money right now and while most of us can turn down the thermostat a degree and put on a jumper, not many of us can do without cooking at least once a day.

Our kitchens are usually the heart of our homes, but they’re also one of the most energy-intensive rooms, what with the oven, the kettle and washing machine, as well as the fridge and freezer. Thankfully, however, there’s a lot you can do to curb your energy use in this most vital of spaces, so follow these handy tips to reduce your bills.

Change the way you cook

Using a microwave for 10 minutes a day costs just £3 each year, so think of more ways to use yours. You could, for example, cook peas or other vegetables in it, instead of using a gas or electric hob. 

Slow cookers are also a great way to make stews and curries and you can get several hours’ use each day for around £15 each year. Slow cookers can take a bit of getting used to, but compared to the annual cost of using an electric hob for 30 minutes a day – £90 or more – it’s really worth the effort.

Make the move to LED lights

No one likes to cook in a dim kitchen, but if you’re worried about turning on too many incandescent or halogen bulbs, you could invest in some LEDs. Not only are they brilliant (ahem) for using as under-cupboard strip lights as they stay cool, they also use just 8% of the energy that older incandescent bulbs do.

Wash your clothes at cooler temperatures

Sometimes only a hot wash will do, but newer washing machines tend to have a 20C or 30C cycle which is much cheaper than a 60C wash. Try to do some loads at 20C or 30C as it’s the heating of the water rather than the motor that racks up the cost. 

You should also use the fastest spin cycle you have, as your clothes will come out that little bit dryer.

Be very careful with your oven

This doesn’t just mean use oven gloves! Your oven can account for up to 10% of your annual electricity usage, so think twice before sparking it up and watch it like a hawk when you do.

As soon as it comes up to temperature, put the food in and try not to open the door unnecessarily as this means it has to work hard to heat up again. 

Ovens do kick out quite a bit of heat, so you might be able to turn off your heating for a while without feeling the chill, especially on warmer or brighter winter days.

 

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