Energy saving tips in the kitchen
Here are some tips to help you save energy in the kitchen...
Fridges and freezers
This is the biggest energy user in most kitchens, especially as many people now have two fridges and a freezer.
Here’s some food for thought to keep your energy bills down:
- Minimise the time your fridge and freeze door is open by thinking about what you want before you open the door
- Adjust control thermostats to maintain the temperature in the fridge between 2°C and 5°C, and in the freezer, between -11°C and -23°C
- Check the internal temperature of your unit is correct by placing a thermometer in the refrigerator section for 5 -10 minutes
- Make sure you replace loose or broken seals. Check seals by placing a piece of paper between the door and the seal and then pulling on the paper. If it moves too easily, you need a new seal
- Fridges and freezers operate at peak efficiency when full, so choose one that’s the right size for your needs
- Defrost chest-type freezers at least 1-2 a year and upright models 2- 3 times a year, and never allow frost build-up to exceed 6mm. Ice can act as insulation, making your freezer work harder than necessary
- Turn off, empty and clean the refrigerator and leave the door open when you are away for an extended period
Follow these tips to reduce your energy use, as well as your water use:
- Connect your dishwasher to cold water
- Wait until you have enough dirty items to fill the dishwasher before operating
- Make the most of all functions on your dishwasher. Small load or half load options, short wash cycles, rinse-only cycles and mid-cycle turn off can all save you energy and time
- Read the manufacturer's instructions on how to load plates, glasses, cutlery and pots
- Check that nothing is preventing the wash arms from rotating properly before you start the dishwasher.
Oven and Cooktops
Smart use of these appliances can help save energy:
Thaw frozen foods before cooking to save approximately 15 minutes cooking time per 500 grams
Place pans or containers so they don't touch each other or the sides of the oven
Try to keep the oven door completely closed until food is cooked. Every time the door is opened, the oven temperature drops by 14° - 20°C
Use only enough water to create steam when cooking vegetables
Be sure pots and pans completely cover hotplates
It's best to cook with lids on pots and pans. You'll achieve better cooking results, including less evaporation, as well as reducing steam and cooking smells in the kitchen
Clean gas burners regularly to remove food spill caught in the small holes in the burner rings. This ensures a constant and even gas distribution and flame size for more efficient cooking.