Saving energy in the kitchen

The types of appliances you use - ovens, cooktops and refrigerator, etc – will affect the rate at which you use energy in the kitchen.

Cooking

Cooking accounts for approximately 8% of the energy usage in the home.

  • Is your conventional oven gas or electric?
  • Are your hotplates gas or electric?

Natural gas is the most cost effective means of cooking with conventional ovens and cooktops.

To ensure you save as much energy – and therefore money – as possible in the kitchen, consider incorporating as many of the following tips into your cooking routine:

  • use the microwave whenever possible
  • minimise grilling
  • cover saucepans and use minimal water
  • simmer saucepans rather than boiling
  • use an electric toaster rather than a griller
  • use an electric kettle rather than boil a kettle on a hotplate.

Refrigeration

Refrigeration accounts for approximately 9% of the cost associated with your home energy usage. If the appliance is old and inefficient, or in poor working order, it will account for even more.

Depending upon the state of your appliance, you may be able to reduce the amount of energy you use and save on your refrigeration costs.

Consider the following:

  • Ensure your refrigerator is situated in a cool place in the home, out of sunlight.
  • Ensure that the rear of your refrigerator is well ventilated.
  • Replace cracked fridge seals and seals that do not grip tightly.
  • Set the thermostat to between 3°C and 5°C in the refrigerator and between -15°C and -18°C in the freezer.
  • If you have more than one refrigerator, i.e.: a drinks fridge, switch it off when not in use.

New Appliances

If you are considering purchasing a new refrigerator, look for a high energy efficiency star rating.

Dishwashing

There are energy efficient ways to use your dishwasher. By making a few small adjustments to the way you use your dishwasher, you will save money and energy.

Consider the following each time you wash:

  • Make sure the dishwasher is full before you turn it on.
  • If equipped with an economy cycle, use it.
  • Scrape your plates rather than waste water rinsing them before washing.

New Appliances

If you are considering purchasing a new dishwasher, look for a high energy efficiency star rating.