Smart Energy shares tips for reducing energy bills
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Cutting back on appliance usage could save households money on their energy bills. However, it can be hard to know which appliances in the home are the most energy-absorbing. The energy firm has listed the 20 appliances which are costing the most on bills, and has worked out how much each of the appliances would use as well as how much they cost per hour to run.
The findings of Energia’s research unveiled that a power shower was the least energy-efficient household item, costing €3.33 (£2.87) to run for an hour. This is almost double the price of running an immersion which was €1.67 (£1.44).
Second on the list was the tumble dryer, which uses an average energy usage (in wattage) of 3,500. The experts said this appliance costs €1.30 per hour (£1.12).
With many households finding washing hard to dry during the winter months, many often turn to the tumble dryer. However, the research found just 15 minutes of drying would cost €0.19 (£0.16).
On the other end of the scale is a television with a 42-inch LCD TV costing just €0.04 (£0.03) to watch per hour, using an average energy usage (wattage) of 120.
An average washing machine costs €0.43 (£0.37) an hour to run, while the dishwasher will set households back a little more at €0.65 (£0.56) an hour. The research also found an air dryer to cost €0.56 (£0.48), while an electric mower will cost €0.56 (£0.48) an hour to use.
The air fryer was the cheapest way to cook at just €0.56 (£0.48) an hour, while a conventional oven would cost €0.58 (£0.58). A microwave is often thought to be the cheapest way of cooking but the research found it to be €0.65 (£0.56) an hour and a toaster €0.68 (£0.58).
The most expensive appliances:
1. Power shower
2. Tumble dryer
3. Hand wash over sink hand heater
4. Electric heater fan
5. Steam iron
7. Electric kettle
8. Hair blow dryer
9. Electric hob
10. Bread toaster
12. Induction cooktop
13. Two ton air conditioner
14. Two ton inverter air conditioner
15. Air fryer
16. Electric mower
17. Espresso coffee machine
19. Washing machine
20. 42-inch LCD TV
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The Irish energy supplier also shared tips for keeping costs down when it comes to household appliances. They recommended keeping the oven door closed and making use of microwaves and air fryers.
1. Keep your oven closed
The firm said: “When you open your oven door, around 20 percent of heat is lost which results in your oven having to work to reheat it, which is why experts advise looking through the glass door to check on food as opposed to continually opening the oven door.
“If you put your food in the oven before you turn the oven on, you can help reduce your energy usage. Another helpful tip is to consider using a slow cooker or batch cooking. A slow cooker in use for six hours can cost you just €0.55 (£0.47).”
2. Make use of your microwave and air fryer
Using a microwave instead of a conventional oven can help to save a lot of energy usage. Microwaves only heat the food inside, not the air around it.
The experts said: “What might take 20 minutes to reheat in the oven for €0.21 (£0.18) could take you 10 minutes in the microwave at a cost of €0.10 (£0.08) with your microwave.
“Meanwhile, using an air fryer for an hour costs €0.55 whereas using an oven for an hour is €0.57 (£0.49p). However, using an air fryer for 15 minutes uses over 40 percent less energy than one hour of oven use.
“This is because air fryers’ smaller sizes tend to maximise airflow and heat your food even quicker than an oven.”
3. Watch out for your washing machine settings
Some appliances may have efficient settings to help reduce energy consumption. According to the pros, setting the washing machine to wash at 30 degrees or on an eco setting could save around 57 percent of electricity.
4. Less is more
Energia said: “To help keep the energy consumption of your fridge and freezers down as they are on average behind over 10 percent of a typical energy bill, only store what you need in the fridge and freezer and complete regular clearouts.
“The less that is stored in the fridge or freezer means the less energy consumption they use, so keeping them clear of food items that don’t require refrigeration can help.”
5. Manage your tumble drying
Drying clothes can be hard at the best of times, but in winter it can almost seem impossible without the help of a tumble dryer. If you do decide to use this appliance, the experts recommended putting similar items to dry together.
This is because different materials require different settings and in general, high heat is used for jeans and towels, while medium heat is needed for synthetic materials.
The pros added: “Dry similar types of clothes together to make it more efficient time-wise. This could allow you to do one 60 minute load and one 120 minute load.
“This would cost 25 percent less than two 120 minute loads. By managing your load correctly, your energy usage will be reduced but also your clothes should last longer.”
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