Energy Efficiency and Kitchen Appliances
Energy efficiency in the home benefits us in many ways. Firstly we save money on our household bills and with the rise in energy prices, every penny counts. One way to start the saving is by choosing energy efficient kitchen appliances.
Start making your effort to reduce your carbon footprint and save money at the same time. If you're shopping for a new dishwasher, cooker, fridge freezer or oven, always look for the Energy Saving Recommended logo. They will cost less to run and help reduce carbon emissions.
Refrigeration - Side by side fridge freezers use more energy than similarly sized models with the freezer on top, even if they both carry the ENERGY STAR on board. The government holds the two categories to different standards, allowing side-by-sides to use 10-30% more energy. Icemakers and through-the-door ice also add to energy consumption.
In cooking, when it comes to choosing the fuel type, gas is usually preferable to electricity as a heating fuel. But because cooking doesn't make a huge overall impact on your energy bill, this choice has more to do with your own preference. Many people find that gas offers better cooking control; however, it also introduces combustion products into the house that must be vented to the outside. Be sure to purchase an energy-efficient range hood that vents cooking products up from the cooktop and directly outside (avoid down-draft vents).
The EU Energy Rating measures energy efficiency on a seven point scale from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient). The rating covers a variety of household appliances including fridges, freezers and fridge-freezers, washing machines, electric tumble driers, combined washer-driers, lamps, electric ovens and air conditioners. By law, all retailers in the EU must display an energy efficiency rating on these products. A product with an A rating will have passed a rigorous, impartial testing procedure, so you can be sure of its high energy efficiency.
If everyone in the UK upgraded their old refrigeration appliance to an A-rated, energy efficient product, energy wastage would be cut by over two-thirds. Buying an energy efficient fridge freezer to replace your inefficient model could cut carbon dioxide emissions by up to 296 kilos a year.
Also, why not consider applying for a grant, availble to many people throughout the UK. The UK Government funds schemes providing up to £2,700 to households on certain benefits (see below for examples of eligibility criteria) to improve their heating and energy efficiency. In England the scheme is known as Warm Front, in Northern Ireland it is Warm Homes, in Scotland it is Warm Deal and the Central Heating Programme and in Wales it is the Home Energy Efficiency Scheme. The eligibility criteria for the schemes differ between countries - with some schemes you need to be in receipt of certain benefits, whilst others are available to anyone over a certain age.
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