For many houses the kitchen is the heart of the home, it’s where everyone instinctively gathers for a cuppa, a snack or their main meal and it’s also the room that uses the most amount of energy so if you’re looking to reduce your carbon foot print it’s a good place to start.
Fridge Energy Saving Tips
How did we ever survive without the fridge? Unfortunately we’ve become a bit too dependent on it and these days almost everything just gets dumped on its bulging shelves.
• Does everything in there really need to live in there? Things like bread, tomatoes and potatoes actually last longer when left at room temperature
• Obviously left over dinner, milk, cheese etc. needs to have a permanent reservation in the fridge but if you’re storing a dozen cans of beer/fizzy drinks in there along with chocolate, cake and other junk food take it out of there. These things only need to be refrigerated for taste not to keep them edible so only chill what you actually need chilled that day
• Take a stock take before you go shopping, don’t buy more yogurts when you’re already got some uneaten in there and only buy food you’re actually going to eat. If the last lettuce went in the bin will the next really fare much better?
• By the same token throw away anything that’s been in there for months, if you’re really not going to eat it why are you paying to keep it chilled?
Oven Energy Saving Tips
For the average family it’s actually the oven that uses the most amount of energy especially if you like to have proper meal on the table each night.
• When you’re heating the oven make sure you’re only heating it to the temperature you need and make sure you’re checking you food often to make sure it’s not over cooked.
• Always keep your oven clean, if you can’t see through the glass door you can’t see if your food is cooked. You also don’t want to be paying to cook any old or burnt food.
• If you’re cooking on the hob always use the kettle to boil the water first as this is quicker and more efficient that using the hobs
• Keep an eye on anything on the hob, don’t let it boil over and always keep saucepans covered so you’re not wasting precious heat
Dishwasher Energy Saving Tips
Technically this isn’t a necessity unless you have small children in which case it’s a vital piece of time saving equipment. Only run it when it’s really full and try running it at night when energy is a bit cheaper.
Microwave Energy Saving Tips
The microwave is the busy person’s life saver, a few seconds and you’ve got a hot meal but as with the fridge you need to make sure you’re using the most energy efficient model as possible
Preparation Energy Saving Tips
• Never throw food away, use tubs to keep it fresh in the fridge or if you don’t think you’ll be eating it for a while put it in the freezer.
• Cook more than you need so you’ve got a complete meal left over that can be frozen for when you’re next pushed for time. It uses much less energy to reheat food than cook it from scratch
• Try cooking as much of your food from scratch, this will involve using dry ingredients that keep longer rather than processed foods that need to be kept in the fridge
• At least once a month you need to have a ‘mash up’ meal where all those little bits you’ve had sitting in the fridge and freezer get cooked up and eaten. It hasn’t got to be gourmet it’s just got to clear some room.
Jessie works for businessenergy.com who help small businesses save energy