classic Kitchen by Carlos Otávio Arquitetura e Interiores

7 smart ideas to lower your electricity bill

Aqeelah Bawa-Osman Aqeelah Bawa-Osman
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Managing a home is not easy. There are always a great deal of issues to think about and consider, especially if you are a homeowner and cannot depend on a landlord to take care of anything that goes wrong.

Maintaining your home means more than just ensuring it is kept clean and in working order as there are the utility bills to pay, which are unfortunately part of the homeowner package. Water and electricity are both expensive, precious resources and we should do our best to conserve both, in an effort to lower our living costs and be more environmentally responsible.

With this in mind, let's consider the possibilities of creating a more efficient, eco-friendly home!

Identify which appliance consumes most power

We may directly think that the kitchen is the source of this power consumption, but this is not often the case. Yes, the kitchen does house a refrigerator that is always on, your oven, microwave, kettle and in some cases even your washing machine and dryer… appliances that are used daily! But take a look a bit further into your home and you will see that your air conditioner, television and even your iron does consumer a great deal of electricity. 

So, consider switching off appliances such as your coffee machine that you don't need all day and only use some appliances during off-peak hours when the cost of electricity is much less. And don't forget to have a look at the user manuals of your appliances to check which mode uses the most eco-friendly amount of electricity!

Reduce the brightness of your screens

We sometimes walk around with a mobile phone, tablet and laptop all with the brightness of the screens on maximum. This means that we are wasting a great amount of electricity daily by simply not reducing the brightness settings on our devices. 

A bright screen has other effects too and causes eye strain and possibly even damage, therefore check your settings and remember how best to reduce the screen brightness, this will reduce harmful glare on your eyes too!

Use equipment in energy saving mode

Making use of equipment in energy saving mode is a step in the right direction, this goes for anything from your television to your dishwasher as well as washing machine. So have a look at the appliances and technological devices in your home including the kids gaming consoles and do your bit to reduce energy consumption. While you at it don't forget to switch your mobile phone to the power saving option for a longer lasting battery!

Switch off equipment at night

Some appliances are not needed throughout the night when everyone is sleeping so do your part and switch them off, this goes for the computer, television and even your home sound system. There is a standby mode for a reason so make use of it and become a bit more environmentally conscious! Don't forget about those lights too!

The best way to remember to switch off all appliances that aren't needed all the time is to have them plugged in at the same point, this way you turn off one switch and all the appliances are off! However, remember that your refrigerator should not be included in this!

Opt for more energy efficient appliances

It may be time for a change if you've had your washing machine for 20 years! Great advancements have been made in reducing the amount of electricity an appliance consumes and if your trusty old appliance is about to give in, it may be time to invest in an A++ grade appliance instead.

This will mean less electricity consumption, not to mention if you keep forking out money for an appliance to be fixed, you might as well by a new one!

Install metering equipment to control consumption

You might think that you could be adding an extra complicated effort to your home, but this possibility for control of the amount of energy you actually consume will be well worth it, especially if you are looking at the areas where you need to reduce consumption. The history is then loaded to your mobile phone or email and you can monitor where the problem areas are, this allows for better perception of energy consumption and an active effort can be made!

Take a smart approach

So switching to smarter plugs may help in this concerted effort to reducing energy consumption, this can be done through new appliances that switch off when not in use for a long period of time or mobile phone chargers that reduce the amount of consumption when the phone has been charged… how about this nifty idea in the image, a table that converts sunlight into energy to charge your mobile phone?

For more advice on going green, have a look at these: 8 Tips For Your Energy-Efficient House.

Which of these tips did you find most useful? Do you have any more to add? Let us know in the comments!
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