Earlier this week I shared some of the things we do around our house to save on lighting and cooling. Today is all about saving energy on appliances and electronics.
Let me start by saying that yes, you can save money by purchasing all energy star and HE appliances! And if you have budgeted to purchase new, energy efficient appliances and other electric items in the house, by all means do so! It will definitely save you in the long run. But for those of us who aren’t in that same place, here are some ideas on how to save on appliances and electronics without having to invest anything.
1. Lower the temperature on your water heater. I have read that for every 10 degrees you turn down your water heater, you will save between $12-30 annually. While that’s not huge (a dollar per month barely seems worth it), when you do this in addition to lots of other small energy saving changes, it starts to add up!
2. Turn off the heated dry setting on your dishwasher. I did this a few months ago. I’m totally not the person who wants to stand at the sink for an extra ten minutes to hand-dry all of my dishes… so when the dishwasher finishes, I just open it and let the dishes air dry. I know myself and I don’t unload the dishwasher immediately anyway. So at least this way I have an excuse as to why I’m not unloading it… or so I tell myself 😉
3. Use hot water for laundry sparingly. I do about 5 loads of laundry each week. One load for my husband’s and my clothes, one load of our son’s clothes, and then usually 2-3 loads of diapers (we use cloth diapers). The only thing that always gets washed in hot water is the diapers. With the rest of our laundry, I give it a once over to see if it will work to just use cold water, or if it needs a little temperature boost to help get rid of stains, etc.
4. Don’t preheat the oven. I have never done this mostly because I always thought it was a wasted step anyway. For those of you who actually know what you’re doing in the kitchen– if you know why a preheated oven is important, then please tell me. But until I figure out if it’s actually necessary, I don’t plan on doing it. Using the oven is already going to heat up your house. Leaving it on for longer will just give it that much more time to get warm. At least that is my reasoning.
5. Shut down the computer and turn off the TV. We have a habit in our house of leaving the computer on all day (and sometimes all night). In fact, after I finish this blog post, I’m guessing I will walk away and forget to shut down, even after writing this! I also like to have something on TV as background noise while I do housework. These are a waste of energy, obviously, since the electronics are running when no one is using them. I am still working on this one, but I’m committed to doing it 🙂
That’s all I’ve got for today.
If you have other ideas on how to save on energy during the summer, share in the comments!!