Have you noticed a sudden spike in your energy bills? Or are you on a quest to build an energy-efficient household? Regardless of the factors that contribute to your decision to reduce your energy usage, you most definitely will not be short for ideas. There are tonnes of easy and creative ways to save energy at home, and luckily, we’ve come up with our top ten for inspiration!
10 Creative Ways To Save Energy At Home
Here at Ampower, we are on a mission to help every home to take a ‘greener’ approach and are always looking for more energy-saving tips to share. While we are all aware of the property updates we can make, such as improving insulation and switching to LED bulbs, there are a wealth of lifestyle changes that can be made to contribute towards lowering your carbon footprint. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at our top ten creative ways to reduce your power usage:
- Move Furniture Away From Radiators
- Let Mother Nature Dry Items
- Get Smart With Your Fridge & Freezer
- Keep Cosy With Rugs & Heavy Curtains
- Use Rainwater To Your Advantage
- Say Goodbye To “Phantom Power”
- Spend The Summer BBQ-ing
- Utilise Task Lighting
- Dig Out Your Green Fingers
- Use Your Microwave For Small Meals
Whether you’re in the processes of redecorating your property or have noticed a sudden spike in your home energy plan bills, there is no better time to reconsider the layout of your home. One of the most common, but often unconsidered culprits of wasted energy, is furniture that has been placed in a location that blocks either radiators or heating vents. From beds and dressing tables to sofas, there is a range of items which are regularly placed directly in front of sources of heat, which will prevent the warmth from circulating around the room. This forces you to turn up your central heating just that extra few degrees to compromise for the lost heat; therefore, causing your bills to rise.
When reconfiguring your rooms, aim to keep all radiators and vents free from obstructions. The more open that they are, the more heat that will filter through your home. For those who are limited in terms of space and cannot redesign their room layout, even moving your furniture out a few inches will make a considerable difference. For more top tips on how to decorate a small space, take a look at Architectural Digest’s Clever blog!
Particularly during the warmer months, there is no need to always use the dishwasher or tumble dryer, especially if you are on a quest to cut your energy usage. As opposed to relying on electronic appliances, why not use mother nature to your advantage? Air drying your items is not only better for the planet, but it’s also completely free!
Once your clothes have been washed, either hang them outside to dry on the washing line or invest in a drying rack for the rainier days. It takes as little as half an hour to dry items, maybe a little longer for thicker fabrics such as jeans, which is almost identical to a tumble dryer! Simply hang your items to dry in the morning, and they’ll be ready to put away by the time you get home in the evening. Green Living Ideas features more handy tips on effectively hanging clothes to dry.
Storing leftover food in the fridge and freezer is an excellent way to reduce waste and improve your overall carbon footprint. However, it is vital to store items correctly to ensure that you can make the most out of your energy saving. Instead of popping items in the fridge uncovered on a plate, ensure that they have been stored away in a plastic container. Failing to cover up food will mean that moisture will eventually begin to accumulate and release into the surrounding air, causing your fridge to use more power to stay at your preferred temperature.
Along with your fridge, you’d be surprised to know that how you pack your freezer has an impact on its efficiency. In fact, it has been proven that a full freezer can retain the cold much better than when it is empty. This is because the frozen food stored inside will help you keep the overall temperature low, meaning that there will be no need to waste energy cooling empty spaces. For more details on the biggest mistakes homeowners make with their freezer, take a look at Good Housekeeping.
One of the most significant contributors to high energy bills is the constant heating and cooling of your home, which means that you want to ensure that your home is as well-insulated as possible. While installing additional insulation in your loft and walls is a costly investment, there are a host of cost-effect alternatives. Hanging heavy curtains, along with investing in rugs if you have wooden flooring, are both ideal for keeping your home at a steady temperature. Heavy curtains, in particular, are fantastic for not only trapping warmth into your home during the winter, but also keeping rooms cool over the hotter months. And even better, it couldn’t be easier to track down fabrics which perfectly complement your interior design. Whether you prefer a more simplistic aesthetics or hope to incorporate an eye-catching pattern, retailers such as Terrys Fabrics have a wealth of stylish options.
Living in the UK means that we most definitely experience our fair share of rain, but have you ever considered using it to your advantage? As rainwater is completely pure and not filled with chlorine, lime or calcium, it has many different household uses. According to a handy article by Rainharvesting Systems, rainwater is ideal for watering your garden, cleaning your car, filling garden features and much more.
To begin collecting rainwater, all you’ll need to do is invest in a water butt, which can be ordered online from stores such as Water Butts Direct. With sizes ranging from just 500 to 4,000 litres, it couldn’t be easier to find a storage container that fits in your garden. In opting for reusing rainwater as much as possible, you can significantly reduce your reliance on your water supplier; therefore, reducing your annual bills and creating a ‘greener’ home.
The phrase “phantom power” relates to all of the power that is lost down to electronics being left on standby mode. While, of course, switching to standby is far better than leaving devices on, you are still losing a considerable amount of energy for no real reason. The most common culprits for wasted power include TV’s, phone chargers and computers; all of which are left plugged into the socket on standby mode almost all day, every day.
Preventing phantom power is as easy as getting into the routine of unplugging all small devices when not in use, along with switching off the socket on larger electricals such as televisions and desktops. If you know that you’re likely to forget to do this, then there is no need to worry, as you can save power by investing in a timer switch for your sockets. This enables you to schedule a time for equipment to switch on and off, helping you to prevent wasted energy.
As we all eagerly await the rare British sunshine and longer evenings, we have the perfect excuse to spend the summer relaxing in the garden. As a BBQ requires absolutely no electricity or gas from your home, opting for making the most out of your BBQ is ideal for saving energy. It’s also a fantastic way to utilise unwanted wood from your garden, construction or landfill sites, further reducing waste! When you begin your summer of BBQ-ing, there are a host of extra handy tips on how to improve your energy efficiency further. Take a look at Point Click Switch for more information!
While we would always suggest using natural lighting to your advantage as much as possible, there will be particular times in the day where artificial alternatives will be your only option. However, before heading straight over to your main ceiling light, consider whether you really do need to light up the entire room. Could you use task lighting instead, which are smaller, therefore, use less power on your home electricity?
Task lighting are fixures that are used to provide illumination when completing a specific activity – think the lamp on your bedside table or desk. While the main use of task lighting will always be to provide you with enough light to carry out a specific task, when placed strategically around your room, they can also be used to give you just enough light on those darker days. Especially in the evenings, task lighting is ideal for providing you with a softer, less harsh light, perfect for unwinding after a long day with a book or your favourite TV series.
As spring is just around the corner, it’s likely that you have started to notice the mornings getting brighter and evenings longer. This means that after months of trying to keep your home cosy and warm, it’s not long before you’ll begin trying your hardest to keep it cool. With this in mind, a fantastic way to provide extra shade to your property, while giving your garden a well-needed revamp, is to plant some trees and vines. Depending on where the sun streams in, plant greenery strategically at both the front and back of your home to provide natural shade to the rooms that you use the most. As less light will be able to stream in, it also means that you can keep your home cooler.
From delicious risottos to super-sweet chocolate desserts, there are a plethora of popular meals that can be made in the microwave as opposed to the oven. In opting for using your microwave for cooking smaller, less complicated meals, you can significantly reduce your energy usage. According to research by Energy Star, using a microwave instead of an oven can use anything from 30% to 80% less power, meaning that your overall carbon footprint will be reduced. If you’re stuck for microwave recipes, then head over to Tasty for 31 mouthwatering ideas!
It’s Never Been Easier To Save Energy!
With the entire population now being encouraged to play their role in helping the planet, it couldn’t be easier to begin saving energy in your home. Whether you experiment with our host of creative ideas listed above or take a bigger step by, for example, installing solar panels or switching to renewable energy, every lifestyle change can make a significant impact. If you have any further questions with regards to your energy usage or hope to switch to a greener electricity or home gas plan, then do not hesitate to contact Ampower. Our team are always more than happy to give you extra tips on how to lower your carbon footprint!