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Becoming more energy efficient in your home doesn’t just mean adjusting your thermostat and taking shorter showers. Start with these Kitchen Tips to Lower Energy Costs.
Top Energy Saving Tips To Save Electricity In The Kitchen
Energy costs are skyrocketing and your kitchen probably accounts for a large percentage of your home’s energy usage. Did you know that there are things you can do in your kitchen to reduce your energy bill? Becoming more energy efficient in your home means more than adjusting your thermostat, turning lights off and taking shorter showers. You can start by making a few tweaks to your routine.
In fact, when you make these minor changes, the payoff can be remarkable, allowing you to save a chunk of change. Let’s talk about some quick kitchen tips you can use to help lower your energy bill.
Unplug Your Appliances
Your appliances are pulling energy when they are plugged up, even if you don’t have them turned on. Unplugging big appliances that you aren’t using at the time like the oven or the dishwasher might be a little much, but you can still save money on your energy bill by unplugging smaller appliances like your coffee pot, toaster, or slow cooker when you aren’t using them.
Keep Your Refrigerator and Freezer Full
Keeping your refrigerator and freezer full makes them work more efficiently because there is not a lot of empty space inside of them to fill with warm air when you open the door that then has to be cooled back down. Keeping your refrigerator and freezer full may also help to keep you from losing any food if there is a power outage.
Your worst offender is probably your refrigerator. It uses more energy than any other appliance in your home. Why you ask? Simple because it is being used 24-hours a day.
Keep Your Coils Clean
Make sure that at least twice a year you clean the coils behind your refrigerator. This will keep your refrigerator running more efficiently and may help to extend its life. You may need to clean the coils behind your refrigerator more often if you have a pet that sheds a lot of fur.
When the coils get clogged with dust, dirt, and pet hair, they can’t release heat properly, so it makes your compressor work harder than it needs to with clean coils. Plus while you have your fridge pulled out it is a great time to dust and clean the flooring that never gets seen.
Check The Seals
Over time, the seals or gaskets on your refrigerator and freezer doors can loosen, which may let cold air escape and make them work harder than necessary. A simple way to check the seals on your refrigerator and freezer doors is to place a dollar bill on the gasket and shut the door. If you can’t pull the bill out easily, then your seals are working properly. If you can pull the bill out easily, then it is time to replace them.
Run Your Dishwasher Full
Don’t run your dishwasher unless you have a full load. Running your dishwasher when it is not full is just wasting energy and costing you more money. In addition to running your dishwasher only when it is full, you can also save money and energy by reducing the temperature on your dishwasher, and by turning off the drying feature and allowing the dishes to air dry.
Did you know when you wash dishes by hand you are actually using more water? According to Cascade, when you use your dishwasher every night instead of handwashing for just 10 minutes, you save 100 gallons of water a week. That’s over 5,000 gallons in a year, or more than 80,000 glasses of water.
Be Aware of Peak Hours
When it comes to using appliances that take a lot of energy, like the dishwasher or the washing machine, it is best to use them early in the morning or later in the evening. You pay more for any electricity that you use during peak hours, usually the hours between 4 and 9 pm. So run the dishwasher while you are getting ready for work, or turn it on right before bed and save yourself a little cash.
Take Advantage of Your Appliances
Chances are you have a toaster oven, slow cooker, and microwave. Using these appliances to cook your meals uses less energy than turning on your stove or your oven. This can also help to keep your house cooler during the summer months.
Cook Smart By Not Preheating Your Oven
It is very, very rare that your oven needs to be preheated before cooking. The exception would be if you are baking, but casseroles, vegetables, and meats can be put into a cold oven as long as you are checking the temperature of the food during the cooking time to make sure it reaches safe levels.
Another great cooking tip: When cooking on the stovetop, you can turn off your stove or oven just before your food is ready. This will allow the residual heat to finish the job. This works really well for those who have an eclectic stove top.
Leave the Lid On
When you are cooking on the stove, make sure that you leave the lid on your pots and pans so that your food will cook faster. The faster your food is done, the less money you are spending on energy.
Plus, to maximize your cooking efficiency, use proper cookware. Using copper bottomed pans, heat up faster. So by using a lid and proper cookware, you will be saving energy costs by cooking faster. And hungry adults and kids alike will back this tip.
Cool Your Food Down
Cool your food down before putting it inside of your refrigerator. Not only is it important to cool your food properly for food safety reasons, but it also helps to keep your refrigerator working properly. Putting hot food inside of the cool refrigerator will raise the temperature inside of it and cause it to work harder than necessary.