30.03.2022 05:40 - edited 18.04.2022 15:53
30.03.2022 05:40 - edited 18.04.2022 15:53
We are all being affected by the increase in energy prices, but there are some small actions we can take to make the costs feel a little less painful. There are lots of ways to save money, we picked 3 changes which could make savings on your household bills!
We want to hear what changes you could make to save money from your household bills, hit ‘reply’ at the bottom of this post to share your ideas and photos.
So I don't pay my utility bill directly, my housemate does as she owns the house we just moved into, but we work together to try and be as energy efficient and self-reliant as possible.
For starters, we long ago switched all our lightbulbs over to LEDs. I've actually started switching my lights over to smart lights, so I can more easily fine tune my lights to only have on the bulbs I need, at the brightsness I need, plus lights can be set to turn off automatically when I'm not home, even if I forget.
We've also transitioned to more energy efficient cooking appliances: induction cooktops and convection ovens. I've actually gone so far as not have an upright freezer, joing entirely with a chest freezer.
Beyond that, the house we live in has solar panels on the roof, and a good size garden with a lot of fruit-bearing plants. We're planning to grow a good ammount of our own fruits and veggies this year.
We also have a smart thermostat and as part of the various renovations, we're working to improve effeciency of the HVAC system and insulation.
I appreciate that most of my list isn't really stuff that's feasible for most people, we're just fortunate that she was able to buy a house with the advantages I noticed, and we have enough budget to make the other improvements.
I did not know that having a horizontal freezer saves energy - i mean unfortunately my flat is to small for one of those but do you know why that is the case?
Yeah, what it basically comes down to is that because cold air is heavier than room-temperature air and sinks, every time you open an upright freezer, all the cold air literally pours out. But with a chest freezer it all stays in there, like water in a bucket. Add in additional gains from the lack of a seal in the middle of the insulated "box" of the freezer (which is less insulated and a potental spot for cold air to leak), plus generally thicker insulation, and they're vastly more efficient.
There's a fun video that a YouTuber I like made last year (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGAhWgkKlHI) although I learned about this several decades ago.
You can get ones that are fairly small, and since I like to pre-make and freeze a lot of meals (so I buy pre-made-frozen or take-out less often - another savings tip I guess), it's always been worth the space to me. In my first appartment had one I could pull out from under some countertop in my kitchen .
Fun fact, I used an Ikea solid-wood countertop mounted on top of an OMAR (Shelf unit) and a couple of Ikea adjustable desk legs - sadly the parts to replicate it no longer exist.
Some great tips @smnc! I also switched my light bulbs to LEDs and have saved loads of money from this. I also invested in a smart thermostat and radiator valves which have really helped us to only heat the rooms we need. I would love to get solar panels and battery storage ... maybe in the future. For now I have a fireplace with an open chimney. I have stuffed it with foam and wool packaging from online orders to stop the draught getting in.
We’ve switched over to LED lights bulbs and turn them off when not in the room. I only wash clothes in cold water, when I have a full wash load and hang clothes outside to dry instead of using the dryer. Always turn off small appliances and unplug when not in use. We’ve gotten a few Energy Star appliances within the last few years, as well. We also save on our grocery bill by growing some vegetables in our garden and use coupons and stock up on essential items when on sale.
We've also switched to LED bulbs and turn off lights when we leave rooms. Other things we can do is to use our tablet more than the desktop computer as tablets use less energy. And now that the weather is getting better, spending more time in the outdoors and not at home can also help reduce the amount of energy we use.
What changes could I make to save money from your household bills? For me food is a huge expense.
Well, one thing I have been doing is being better at not letting foods to go waste. In the past I had many vegetables that got old and I had to discard them because I bought too many and did not use them. So one change I really want to make is to buy fresh vegetables every day or every 2 days, and only what I need, so that I save money, eat fresher vegetables, and keep things out of the waste and save money.
Reducing food waste as much as possible is something I'm working on as well, @sylviaf!