Cut electricity costs

2015-06-24 06:00

MOST householders are finding the cost of electricity a strain on the monthly budget. The possibility that it could be increased by a further 25% make these power-saving tips worth trying out:

Kitchen:

• Use a kettle to boil water for cooking as it is quicker and uses less energy than a pot on the hob.

• Always match the size of the pan with the size of the stove plate.

• Use a microwave to cook as it is quicker and cheaper, one oven uses the same power as 18 microwaves.

• Cut food into smaller sections before cooking to help it cook quicker.

• Make toast in a toaster, not under the grill.

• Don’t keep opening the oven door while cooking.

• Always put a full load of washing in the washing machine and if the weather is good dry the clothes on the line outside.

• If you have a stove with heavy solid plates that retain heat, switch off the plate a few minutes before removing the pot.

• When you open your fridge door for more than a moment, it loses cold air. Cooling it down again will take a lot of electricity. So be quick and don’t let cold air out.

• Do not place hot food in the refrigerator or the deep freeze, rather allow it to cool outside first.

• Ensure that the door seals are in good condition and don’t put the refrigerator near the oven.

• Every time you switch on your dishwasher, it is the same as switching on 120 CFL energy-saving light bulbs. Wait until the dishwasher is full before you switch it on. Use the economy programme wherever possible.

• Clothes should never be placed in the tumble dryer while they are still dripping with water, remove excess water.

Lights:

• In most homes, lighting accounts for around 17% to 20% of the electricity bill. A considerable amount of electricity can be saved by replacing your conventional tungsten bulbs with compact-florescent lamps (CFLs). They are more expensive, but CFLs last eight times longer.

• Turn off the lights that you don’t need on and use lighter lampshades as they will make the most of the energy.

• Fit lower wattage bulbs wherever possible and avoid leaving spotlights on for too long, as they use more electricity.

Lounge:

• Switch the TV off when not in use, leaving it on standby mode uses up to 50% of the power the TV would use if it was actually on, the same goes for the hi-fis and computers.

•Use a gas heater or a temperature-controlled oil heater for heating and switch off the heater if you leave the room.

• Shower instead of running a bath, as a shower uses much less water and therefore, less hot water and less electricity.

• Fit low-flow shower heads, this will not only save water, but electricity too.

• A geyser blanket will insulate your geyser not allowing the heat to escape. To save further, insulate the water pipes and turn the geyser’s thermostat down to 60°C

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