What’s with My Energy Bill?
It can be quite frustrating when you are trying to get your energy bill down but it seems you’ve reached a plateau of sorts. As a result, you end up making several calls to the utility complaints department, or your current energy supplier, to find out what the issue is. Well, sometimes the issue is with your household appliances.
How Old are they?
When you get a house with an oven, dishwasher, heater and all the rest, you feel set for life. Then you move in with your old vacuum cleaner from back in the day and all the hand-me-down kitchen appliances.
All this is great for saving money initially, but after a few years, these appliances will start showing their age. They will use a lot more energy than before and cost you more running them, which will ultimately make the initial saving seem like pocket change.
I can’t Afford to Overhaul My Home!
We know. Unless you’ve won the lottery or something, it is impossible to get brand new appliances all at one go. So we will show you where you can improve efficiency simply through maintenance and where you will have to buy another appliance.
On average, a new dishwasher could cost you about ₤400 or more. However, with a few maintenance tips, you may not have to spend this much for better efficiency, especially if your dishwasher is not that old.
First, run full loads only and ensure your water is hot enough before running the washer. Also clean the screens and the filter to reduce the energy spent running one load.
According to the experts, you need not replace a dryer until you cannot avoid it. Regular maintenance is all you need. Clean the lint trap for every load as well as the area below the lint trap. This will reduce the dry time and save you some money. It certainly beats spending over ₤400 on a new dryer, doesn’t it?
3. Water Heater
This could go either way. If you want to change the type of water heater then you will have to buy a new one. If you only want increased efficiency, insulate the tank outside to maintain the water temperature for longer.
If yours is a gas water heater, make sure to drain about a gallon of water from the bottom valve every month. This will get rid of the sediment which usually increases the amount of energy needed to heat the water.
4. Washing Machine
If you have a top-load washer where water comes in from the bottom, you need an upgrade. There is no amount of maintenance that can cover the savings you would get from a front-load washer. You will use half as much water and 40% less energy which comes to about ₤90 a year. The new washer will cost you about ₤490, but it is worth every cent.
5. Air Conditioner
This depends on how old your air conditioner is. Anything over 20 years old simply needs a replacement. If yours is a little younger than that, try replacing the filters, cleaning the coils and managing your ducts to reduce your energy bill. However, this will not get your energy usage as low as modern air conditioners can.