With the cost of living crisis now in full effect and due to devastate millions of households in the UK, many of us are looking for ways to cut our energy bills.
So it’s good to know which items in our homes incur higher costs than others. And it seems not all kitchen appliances are made equal. Some require a lot more energy than others.
Our fridge freezers, the oven/hob, our kettles, and extractor fans are some of the worst offenders. According to kitchen experts Kesseler, these appliances, when used too much or not efficiently, can rack up the cost.
But it’s not like we can simply turn off the fridge, right? Nor refrain from using our cookers.
However, there are some things we can do to help curb costs. So we’ve asked Kesseler, plus MoneySupermarket.com, easy swaps we can make in the home to reduce our bills.
Check the temp of your fridge/freezer
The experts at Kesseler tell HuffPost: “If your fridge freezer allows you to change the set temperature, consider what you put in there and whether you need it to be really cold or just chilled to keep it safe and healthy. Many people have their fridges turned down much lower than they need to and this uses more energy to keep the temperature down, particularly in the time after the door has been opened allowing the cold air to escape.”
They also mention how to reduce the cost of wine chillers (which many of us may not have), but if you do, you might consider which wines you put in there and the required storage temperature. Many people turn their wine coolers down too far.
“A lighter white wine such as a Pinot Grigiot or Sauvignon Blanc should be served between 7-10 degrees celsius whereas a white wine with more body like a Chardonnay should be served at a warmer temperature of 10-13 degrees C, which means you can turn up the chiller thermostat and use less energy,” they said.
Use an air fryer instead of the oven
In terms of cooking, an air fryer can be a much more energy efficient way to cook if you are bill-conscious.
Kesseler says: “An average air fryer will use around 0.75kWh for half an hour of cooking (and only takes a moment to get up to temperature). By contrast, the average oven will take 10 minutes just to get to cooking temperature, and then 30 minutes of cooking will use an average of 1.5kWh.
“Therefore, air fryer usage can indeed reduce electricity bills and it’s also often allowing for healthier options too, so there are two benefits there.”
Microwave where you can
Some dishes can be cooked just as well in the microwave as the oven, but the former takes up less energy than the latter.
Microwaves are quite energy efficient. According to the Energy Saving Trust, using a microwave (800W, category E) will use around 0.09kWh of electricity for every five minutes.
Use less water in your kettles
Overfilling a kettle forces it to take much longer to boil the water, using energy unnecessarily. Many people just fill the kettle once and then make three/four cups of tea a day from the same water, paying to reheat that water multiple times. The average kettle will use 3000 watts of electricity per hour.
If you’re only boiling to make one cup of tea at a time, you could reduce your energy bills by up to 75% compared to filling the kettle teach time.
Wash clothes at a lower temperature
Money Supermarket says washing at 30 degrees rather than 40 degrees can help reduce your energy usage, and if you can cut out one wash cycle per week you’ll clip £5 off your annual energy bill.
Time to buy efficient appliances?
The cost of living hikes leave little to spend on new gadgets but if your old appliances are on their way out, it might be time to invest in better energy-saving devices.
Money Supermarket says going for an item with a high energy-efficiency rating can be worth the investment.
For example, an A+++ washing will typically use £65 less energy than an A+ one over an 11-year product lifespan. A modern, efficient dishwasher will typically cost around £7 less a year to run compared to an older model.
An A+++ fridge freezer will save around £320 in energy bills over its lifetime compared to an A+ model.
Turn off standby appliances
Lastly, you should also turn appliances off at the plug to save an average of £30 a year, says the money-saving website.
Use plug sockets that can be turned on and off via your phone, to make sure you switch unused appliances off. You could use cheaper timer plugs to schedule turning appliances off.