Top 5 eco-friendly kitchen changes
Posted 20 October 2016
Every year, the so-called “Bake Off Effect” sees sales of certain kitchen appliances soar, just in time for Christmas. However, many high-powered kitchen gadgets used on the programme aren’t actually all that friendly to the environment or your electricity bill.
Here’s our list of five affordable changes you can make which will help you cook a little greener (vegetables optional!)
1. Induction hobs
Induction hobs are becoming increasingly popular in homes around the UK. If you are looking to replace an ageing gas or electric unit, you might want to consider an induction hob instead. Induction hobs use less energy than their gas or electric counterparts – in fact, the Smeg hobs used in Trivselhus by Esh homes are all A-rated appliances. This is because they use an electromagnetic current rather than a traditional gas flame or electric heating element. The magnetic field produced by the cooktop penetrates the metal of the pan and the resulting energy is dissipated as heat – cooking the food.
The key to induction hobs is that this form of heat generation is incredibly efficient and no energy is lost during the process. In fact, the second you remove a pan from the heat, the cooktop itself is cool to the touch – great if you have a houseful of children with wandering hands.
2. Energy-efficient appliances
It’s now easier than ever to ensure that your kitchen is kitted out with energy efficient appliances. Everything from cookers to dishwashers, fridge-freezers to tumble dryers are now labelled with energy ratings to help you make a more sustainable decision. This is particularly important for appliances such as fridges and freezers which have to remain switched on all of the time. The Energy Saving Trust reported that an A+++ rated fridge will save you £190 on your energy bills per year, compared to an A+ rated fridge, so the best choice for the environment is often the best choice for your wallet.
Having said that, energy ratings do take size into consideration – so whilst a large A+ rated fridge may appear to be good for the planet, a smaller A rated fridge might use less energy even if it is less efficient.
3. Recycling waste
While this won’t save you cash on your bills, recycling will still help you feel greener. It also might reduce how often you need to take the bin out in the process! Sorting waste into paper, glass, mixed recycling and food waste can dramatically cut down how much of your rubbish gets sent to landfill. If you live in a home with a garden, you might even want to consider composting your own food waste to help your plants flourish.
If you don’t have a garden, it’s likely that your local council has some sort of food waste collection scheme. Visit your local council’s website and take a look at the relevant sections on rubbish collection or recycling.
4. Fixing repairs
When you’re short on cash, leaving a leaky tap or slightly broken window latch may seem like the most financially-viable option. Unfortunately, unsolved repairs can translate to skyrocketing energy bills that will hit your pocket hard in the long-term. That leaky tap is no doubt contributing to your water bill, and an unsealed window can allow heat and energy to escape, causing you to raise your heating and, in turn, your bills. Try to deal with small repairs like these as soon as possible in order to save you a lot of money in the future.
5. Switching off
Switching off appliances overnight or when they aren’t in use can save you more money than almost any other energy-saving technique. It has been estimated that between 10% and 20% of our energy usage each month comes from what has been termed “energy vampires” or “phantom loads” – devices that use electricity even when they are turned off.
Microwaves, blenders, food processors, dishwashers and TVs. All of these electronic goods continue to use up a small amount of energy when they are in standby mode. It may not be much per day, but over longer periods of time, failing to turn your appliances off at the wall can have a dramatic effect on your energy bills – and ultimately the environment.
Why not try switching off your appliances at the wall when you go to bed at night, and then begin comparing your bills from month to month. What you save might just surprise you.
Looking for a luxury home that can reduce your energy bills and do more to look after the environment? Take a look at our developments today.