Summer has been around for only a few weeks, but it’s been hotter than ever. Chances are, you have been running that A/C and staying indoors to beat the heat. With your A/C running at full blast, you are staying cool, but you are using quite a bit of energy. It’s hard to turn off the A/C in extreme heat, but you can balance the energy you are using by making a few adjustments to break even.
Some of the easiest ways to conserve energy can be found right in your kitchen. Making a few changes in the way you cook food, or keep your fridge cold can save you money every month. Here are some energy saving tips, right in your kitchen.
Because they cycle on and off all day, every day, refrigerators consume more electricity than nearly every appliance in your home. Take these steps to lighten that energy load.
-Adjust the Temperature. Chances are, your fridge’s thermostat is higher than it needs to be. Adjusting the temperature by simply maintaining 37 – 40° F for the fresh food compartment and 0 – 5° F in the freezer compartment, you can save as much as $22 per year. If your model does not offer an onboard temperature display, it’s definitely worth it to purchase two portable thermometers to properly gauge the temps.
-Switch to an Ice Tray. As convenient as the automatic ice maker is, it’s a huge energy waster. Most units require little more than a lift of the sensor arm to switch them off. Some existing units also offer the option to remove the ice maker all together. Take it out, make more room in the freezer and toss in an ice tray and save money.
-Keep Your Coils Clean. As it accumulates dust, air flow is restricted, which forces the machine to work harder and longer than normal. A good way to keep the coils clean is by vacuuming away the dust that accumulates about every 6 months or so. The fridge should also be placed near the wall with at least a 3 inch clearance behind the fridge to
By properly managing cook time and cook space, you can save energy when using either your gas or electric oven.
-Turn Burners off Early. It’s a fact that electric stove top burners retain heat well after you power them off. By turning the heat off shortly before cooking is done, you can use that residual heat to finish up the cooking process.
-Follow Proper Pan Size to Burner. Small burner heats small pans. Big burner heats big pans. Simple as that. When you are heating a large pan on a small burner, or vice versa, energy is being wasted. Keep the correct sizes on your stove and you won’t waste energy heating the rest of your kitchen instead of the pan.
-Don’t Bother Preheating. This may seem like a simple practice, but in truth, you can save about $2 a month by not preheating your oven. Many cooks agree that the practice is wholly unnecessary for all but a few recipes, like baking breads and cakes.
Those are just a few ways to keep your energy bills down. What tips do you have?