With the bathroom coming in close second, the kitchen is by far the most wasteful room in the modern household. All the appliances ranging from the notorious refrigerator to the overused microwave tend to consume large amounts of electricity on a daily basis, and that is without counting the lighting and the ventilation that’s often used to cleanse the area of cooking odours.
This is why it is important to improve energy efficiency in the modern kitchen, not only for the inherent financial savings, but also in order to help the preservation of the environment. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best ways to take energy efficiency in your kitchen to the max.
Upgrade your appliances
First things first, there is nothing that can help your kitchen join the green side like a fresh new set of eco-friendly appliances. If your appliances are old and dated by manufacturing standards, then chances are that they are consuming way more energy than they should.
The best way to optimise energy use is to switch your old appliances one by one and replace them with their contemporary counterparts that boast an Energy Star rating. This rating will tell you just how much energy the appliance can save. Keep in mind that contemporary models are built with energy savings in mind without sacrificing performance.
Use and clean your appliances right
Among the common culprits in any wasteful kitchen, you will find the habitual misuse of appliances and improper cleaning. Every appliance comes with a manual, and if you want to make the most of your unit, you should follow the instructions. These will usually tell you not to underload the dishwasher, or to avoid keeping the refrigerator on the highest setting – and they wouldn’t be wrong.
What’s more, by avoiding to clean your appliances regularly, you are allowing food and dirt build-up to accumulate, ultimately hindering their performance and causing them to work overtime to achieve the same results. This is no way to run an energy-efficient kitchen, so make sure that you clean the refrigerator, the microwave, the oven, and the dishwasher regularly.
Adhere to regular maintenance
Along with proper cleaning and use on a daily basis, another grand step towards long-term energy efficiency would be to adhere to regular maintenance in order to ensure your appliances are functioning the way they should as well as to prolong their lifespan. That said, you should avoid fiddling with electricity yourself, and let a professional take care of this biannual task.
For instance, these Sydney-based appliance repair experts specialise in the upkeep and prompt repair of your most crucial appliances such as the stove and the oven, ensuring that energy consumption is optimised and reduced as much as possible. Remember, if there is something wrong with an appliance, it will show up on your electricity bill, so be sure professional maintenance ranks high on your upkeep list.
Optimise energy use with lowered settings
As we’ve mentioned earlier, just because you can push the limit of your appliance doesn’t mean you should. Yes, keeping the refrigerator at max settings might keep your food cool, but the increased energy expenditure won’t be worth the few extra degrees you’re going to knock off the digital display.
Likewise, your dishwasher might boast the option to run a lengthy cycle, utilising a lot of power and water to make your dishes squeaky-clean, but you can achieve the same effect with a quick wash cycle or maybe even a cold water cycle as well. Modern appliances are built that way – to produce the best results with minimal energy use, so keep the settings low and watch as your utility bill deflates over time.
Don’t forget about lighting
Last but not least, no eco-friendly homeowner should forget about the role lighting plays in bringing a green kitchen to life. Instead of sticking with the energy-wasting incandescent lighting scheme, it would go a long way if you replaced it with LED lighting.
No, LED lights aren’t exactly cheap, but they are a sound investment that can drastically lower energy consumption in your home over the years, and help your appliances be that much more efficient in their own department. So consider replacing one light bulb at a time for maximum energy savings.
Transforming the kitchen into a powerhouse of efficiency needn’t be a cumbersome chore, and it is definitely not something you should put off indefinitely. Rather, it should be a rewarding project that will help you make long-term financial savings, while at the same time aiding in the preservation of the environment.
Guest post by Lillian Connors
About the Author
Lillian Connors can’t resist the urge to embark on a myriad of green living/home improvement projects and spread the word about them. She cherishes the notion that sustainable housing and gardening will not only make us far less dependent on others regarding the dwellings we inhabit, but also contribute to our planet being a better place to live on. You can check her out on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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