Switch off and save: 5 appliances that use lots of electricity

Which electrical appliances should we switch off to save more money? Making these 5 small changes can help combat the impact of rising electricity costs.

The content of this article was relevant at the time of publishing. Circumstances change continuously and caution should therefore be exercised when relying upon any content contained within this article.

Happy family mother housewife and child son in laundry with washing machine

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Electricity bills are going up, and it may be difficult to bring the cost down just by switching your supplier. You might get a better electricity deal on a comparison site, and it’s definitely worth checking. However, the price of running electrical appliances is now far from cheap. 

If you have a busy lifestyle, it can be hard to keep track of your electricity use. Unless you know which appliances are making a real difference to your electricity bill, switching a few things off might not make a significant difference. Therefore, it’s worth knowing which electrical appliances are the biggest offenders in terms of cost. 

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Here are five appliances that could have a noticeable impact on your electricity bill.

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1. Electric heating 

It’s crucial for the very old and very young to keep warm, no matter how much electricity costs. Electric heaters can be essential on very cold days, but leaving an electric heater on instead of wearing warmer clothes can be very expensive.

Heating water with an immersion heater is also very costly, so take care when setting the timer and only have it on for precisely as long as you need to.

Heating a home entirely with electric heating can be challenging financially. Homes with storage heaters are likely to be on an Economy 7 tariff, with cheaper electricity at night. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to keep up to date with the weather forecast so that storage heaters are not turned up to the max on warmer days. 

2. Electric showers

The more you shower, the more electricity you use. Health experts agree that it’s not necessary to shower every day. In fact, it can be bad for your skin to shower too often. By showering every other day, you can make a saving of 50% on the cost of using an electric shower.

Save even more money on electricity by letting your hair dry naturally rather than using an electric hairdryer.

3. Tumble dryer

It’s great to be able to dry clothes in a couple of hours, but you can make huge savings on your electricity consumption by managing without. Of all electrical appliances, the tumble dryer represents the most unnecessary use of electricity for many households. Using a dryer twice a week can cost well over £100 per year.

Aim to line dry in summer and invest in an indoor drying rack for cold and rainy days.

Using your washing machine less often but with larger loads and at a lower temperature will also save on electricity.

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4. Electric oven and hob

If you want to spend less time cooking, saving money on the electricity bill is a worthy excuse. When you do have to switch it on, it’s all about reducing cooking time. Using the right size pan for what you’re cooking and switching on the right size ring for the pan can help. Using pans with lids to keep the heat in and only using as much water as is needed when boiling can also reduce electricity use. 

In the summer, salads are more appealing (and could even be home-grown). It’s worth investigating other methods of cooking with electricity that are cheaper and easier to use than an electric cooker, such as a slow cooker or an air fryer. Smarter cooking appliances should be available secondhand on eBay or Facebook Marketplace.

5. Electric kettle

Fancy a cup of tea? It’s better to make a pot and save electricity on that second mug. Electric kettles, as with any electrical appliance that heats water, are not cheap to use, so you can save by never boiling more water than you need. 

Electricity savings that make a difference

Any appliance that involves creating heat gobbles up a lot of electricity. Using a smart meter to track how much your electric appliances are using can help you identify the biggest culprits.

Replacing light bulbs and appliances with more energy-efficient choices will save electricity over time.

Thinking twice before using electricity-guzzling appliances could lead to significant savings that could be used to grow your emergency fund or build your savings.

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