Today, we can hardly imagine life without the constant buzzing of appliances. There is just one problem here: in an average household, they tend to suck a great deal of energy. This is where you have to step up in order to turn the situation around and maybe even save up a hefty sum. Namely, actively maintaining and fine-tuning your appliances is good for both the environment and your wallet. In a nutshell, you have to see to it that they are in top working condition and clean. So, are you ready to achieve a more sustainable home and make a positive change happen?
Start with a clean slate
Let us start with the refrigerator, one of the largest and most energy-sapping appliances of all. The first thing you can do is clean it thoroughly. Many people do not know that this chore, apart from keeping bad odors at bay, also increases the efficiency. Focus on the outside as well, especially the backside and the underside of the fridge. Moreover, maintain an optimal temperature— between 37 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit is the sweet spot. When the inside compartments are too cold, the fridge consumers more electricity to operate.
A microwave is a much smaller specimen, but it can also make a difference in the household efficiency department. So, clean the build-up, caked-on food residue on a regular basis. That way, all the energy used goes towards heating the food you want to eat. Besides, the food leftovers can release unpleasant odors or even catch fire. Another neat trick is to open the microwave just before it finishes heating, which prevents the timer from going off and saves a bit of energy. One thing to avoid is using this appliance for defrosting.
Making room for efficiency
A dishwasher is another heavyweight champion of resource waste. It uses a lot of water and electricity to make your life easier. The question is whether this is all truly worth it? Well, it depends on the model you possess. Unlike older, chunkier counterparts, the cutting-edge smart washers are able to minimize the energy input and get the job done.
This brings us to a point: If a particular appliance is beyond salvation or simply too inefficient to begin with, replace it with a newer, green model. You can check out the new line of Maytag appliances to see what I’m talking about. These high-efficiency products boast advanced conservation features and are Energy Star certified. The upfront investment may seem incommodious, but in the long run, you can dramatically reduce your carbon footprint, as well as the energy bill. Also, if you really cannot afford a big appliance like a dishwasher, do not fret – just make sure to use the full load every time without overstuffing it.
As for the washing machine, there are a couple of things you can do. First off, you should strive to use lower temperatures and settings, and less water for your loads. Really hot water is only needed for dark and deep stains. Also, note that it is possible to rinse heavily soiled clothes and ensure they come out of the machine sparkly clean and fresh. Finally, try to use the shortest cycle for most of the clothes with quick turnaround.
Bear and mind that similar tactics do the trick when applied to other appliances as well. Thus, do not overlook a single opportunity to conserve. Oh, and one final piece of advice: regardless of how big or small it is, every appliance should be switched off completely when not in use. In standby mode, appliances are inactive, yet they still draw electricity, due to the fact that clock displays are lit. Therefore, always unplug your appliances. Never go on a holiday without doing this — you could be shocked when the next utility bill arrives.
Out with the old, and in with the new
Modern homes are packed with appliances and devices that devour electricity. They account for up to one-third of the overall energy use. Hence, it is crucial not to let them pose a major source of energy loss and inefficiency. Your habits and purchase choices play a vital role in optimising your consumption patterns. So, commit to regular cleaning and maintenance and you will be able to spend less water and electricity without really sacrificing performance. Remember that in order to make strides towards a green way of living you have to invest money, effort and thought.
Author Bio: If one thing is true about Lillian Connors, her mind is utterly curious. That’s why she 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.