A woman loads laundry into a washing machine

How to get serious about energy savings

Making smarter choices and knowing which appliances are heavy on power can cut our bills even further

Now that the price cap on energy prices has gone up, it’s a good time to think about how our choices can help us keep a handle on our bills.

At Quids in! we’ve spoken about being savvy about our energy use before, but frankly we can never have too many tips for saving.

It’s hard to know which appliances are costing the most to run, but once we understand this a bit more we can make smarter choices around the house.

Keep your cool

In most homes, the biggest guzzler of energy is the fridge. While we can’t exactly switch it off and on all the time, we can avoid leaving the door open for ages (meaning it has to work harder to get back to its correct temperature). And we can also keep it defrosted – even a small layer of ice build up makes it less efficient.

And not all fridges are created equal – an appliance with an A*** rating uses 80 per cent less energy than a D-rated one. If our fridge is on the old side and we’re lucky enough to be offered a newer one or spot a cheap one second-hand we should snap it up if we can!

Smarter washing

Households tend to use their tumble dryer around 150 times a year – at a cost of £1 a go. Even if we have a garden, we’re not likely to get much outdoor drying done at this time of year. 

So filling the dryer is more efficient than using it with just a few socks in it, and putting clothes through a spin cycle in the washing machine first will cut the length of time we need to use it for. Or we can just dry on an airer more often.

We can save even more by making sure our clothes really need washed before sticking a load on.

According to a report by the Society of Chemical Industry, we’re all washing our clothes too much, harming the planet and our wallets. Not only that, the report says it’s perfectly fine to wear clothes for three or four days before washing them (apart from underwear!)

Sniffing, sponging and steaming are all ways to cut the cost of laundry, and they’ll make our clothes last longer too.

Cooking costs

If we have an electric hob in the kitchen, unfortunately it’s going to be more expensive to use than a gas one – but there are ways to cook smarter. Choose a pan and a ring that are best suited for what we’re heating – too big or too small and we’ll be wasting energy.

A slow cooker, if we have one, is the cheapest way to cook everything from soups and stews to cakes.

And it’s not just the big appliances we should be thinking about – author Lynn Beattie, who blogs as Mrs MummyPenny, kept a close eye on her energy use and found her hairdryer was pretty greedy. 

So if we can leave our hair to dry naturally once in a while it could really help. (She also limits showers to four minutes and uses a timer to make sure her family sticks to it!)
There are even more energy-saving tips on our website.

Back to Readers Club News button

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.