This month, we’re back for part 2 of our How to Save Energy series, now focusing on electrical appliances. At Empower Electric, we’re passionate about helping our clients save energy and keep their operating costs as low as possible. On that note, we’ve compiled some great steps you can take to save energy in your home and keep your electrical bills lower as well as everyday tips and tricks you can start doing right away. Keep reading to find out our energy-saving tips for electrical appliances.
Look for the Logo
The easiest way to save energy with your electrical appliances is to get energy-efficient ones. Look for the logo on the appliance, it’ll usually be Energy Star or something similar. These appliances run at a fraction of the energy that older appliances use. You might end up paying more initially for an energy-efficient appliance but over time you’ll be saving money on your energy bill, so be sure to consider the long-term cost savings when looking for new appliances.
Another great way to be more in control of your energy-saving is to switch to smarter devices. Having a thermostat that you can set to turn on and off at certain times or control from your phone is not only great for energy-saving, it’s also convenient if you’ve been out all day and want to come home to a comfortable home, simply set a timer for a few minutes before you return or manually turn on the heating or cooling from your phone during your commute. It’s a much cheaper alternative to upgrading your HVAC system, though you should have that serviced as well to ensure you’re running as efficiently as possible.
Speaking of smart devices, smart power strips are also a good way to cut down on your energy output. A lot of energy is wasted from appliances that are still plugged in when turned off or left in standby mode. We know it can be a pain to be constantly plugging and unplugging appliances, which is where smart power strips can be extra helpful. Also known as advanced power strips, smart power strips turn off the power to electronics when they are not in use. You can set them to turn off at an assigned time, when inactive, or via remote switches or a master device.
Timing is Everything
This is one tip we encourage you to look into for your area, as it doesn’t apply to everyone. Some electric companies charge more for energy use during peak hours. This tends to be in the early evening during the week. So, if you want to save energy, start that load of laundry in the morning, if you can, or later in the evening. Overnight rates are always going to be the cheapest option, but if you live in a shared space, it’s not always the best idea to be running a loud appliance late at night. Check out what your energy provider’s rates are and, if you’re still not sure, give them a call. Many places like BC Hydro, for example, are happy to help customers be more energy-efficient and should be forthcoming with their rate structures.
Fill It Up
This tip has a few stipulations to it, so make sure to read it closely. Fill up your washer so you aren’t wasting energy or water by doing half loads. You’ll also want to fill up your dishwasher instead of running half loads. With your dishwasher, you can save even more energy by handwashing your dishes if you need to. Unless you’ve got a cupboard full of dishes, you might run out of plates before the dishwasher is full, anyway, so get scrubbing between full dishwasher loads.
On the flip side of filling things up, don’t overload your dryer. It can be full, but not overloaded as it’ll need to work harder to get all of your clothing dry. When it comes to drying clothes and linens, it is always better to use a washing line or a clothes horse but we understand that that isn’t always an option for people, especially in rainy Vancouver. Use a fast spin on your washing machine to remove as much water as possible so your drying time is shorter.
While we’re still talking about laundry, washing your clothes in cold water saves a lot of energy each year. Even lowering the temperature to 30 degrees can save over a third of the energy you’d use washing at high temperatures. As an added bonus, washing your clothes in cold water means you don’t have to sort your clothes by colour as things won’t bleed into each other, though we do recommend soaking those new red items by themselves the first couple of times to be extra safe.
In the summertime, it’s easier not to use your oven every day as you’re already trying to avoid heating the whole house. Making more use of your barbecue on nice days (or not-so-nice days if your porch is covered) is not only delicious, it’s energy-saving! Other great solutions that use less power than your stove or oven include boiling water in an electric kettle, reheating meals in the microwave or toaster oven, and using an air fryer or slow cooker. They’re also much less cumbersome to clean.
Be Energy Efficient with Empower Electric
We hope you enjoyed these tips to help you save energy and money on your electricity bill. Speaking of efficiency, Empower Electric can take care of all your electrical needs expertly and efficiently, which saves you time and money than trying to do it yourself or needing to repair anything because you did try to do it yourself. Our team can take care of everything from lighting installation to installing EV charging stations and electrical upgrades for your hot tub. Contact us via our website or give us a call to get started today.