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Appliance energy efficiency – some top tips

Saving Energy

All of you will have seen the energy efficiency labels on just about every electrical appliance you can find in the shops these days. From fridges to freezers, cameras to coffee makers – they are everywhere.

They are supposed to make it easy for all of us to buy appliances that use less energy and help us to keep our utility bills as low as possible. And it’s true they do make it easier to chose which is appliance is more efficient. But there are a few things that are not quite as straight forward.

So here we’re going to try and help by explaining how you can understand these energy efficiency labels but also give you some simple tips on how to save on your energy bills.

The labels typically range from a green (good) through to a red (bad) rating, using an A to G type rating respectively. As appliances have got more and more efficient – they now tend to run from A+++ through to D. Most are specific to the type of appliances, so a washing machine will be rated on a typical wash cycle, tumble dryers on how dry they get the clothes, a dish washer on place settings and so on – so they are pretty useful.

So outside of choosing the most efficient products – what else can we do to reduce our energy bills?

This leads us to a bit of a conundrum. The conundrum is that appliances can have the same energy efficiency rating and yet consume wildly different amounts of electricity. How does that work?

Well it’s all down to size.   An A+ rated fridge with a  a cubic capacity of 287 litres like this Bosch is going to cost you more per year to run that the Liebherr which has the same A+ rating but has a capacity of 154 litres.

The same applies to TVs, freezers, cookers and so on – small is more efficient. So our tip here is to pick the most suitable size for you and your family.

Next up is our old friend – stand by mode. According to the Energy Saving Trust we spend nearly £100 a year simply by leaving appliances in stand by mode. With our ever growing number of electrical appliances – that figure is going to grow. So by turning off, at the plug things like TVs, laptops, routers, DVDs we can easily save ourselves a fair bit of money. You can even buy plugs that will turn, say your TV completely off once it’s been in standby for a minute or so.

Obviously things like fridges and freezers are switched on 24/7 so for these products we’d recommend you get the most energy efficient one you can find. Aim for an A+ rating and remember, as we said – size matters.

Tumble dryers and washing machines burn through electricity so hang your washing on the line or a clothes horse if you can and use a lower temperature when washing.  We have several washing machines with an A+++ rating – which is the most efficient you can get. Like this Panasonic. And many more that are A+ or better. Visit our washing machine pages to find out more.

Finally, although we all love a cup of tea and a nice biscuit, when you consider the average UK home boils up the kettle 1,500 times a year – that’s a lot of tea, a lot of fig rolls and a lot of electricity. Cutting out the odd cuppa here and there would easily cut down on your bills.

So there you have a few simple and effective ways with which you can cut down on your energy bills and that has to be a good thing especially as energy bills seem to be constantly on the up.