Everyone loves a home-cooked meal, but the appliances used in cooking can use a lot of energy. Conserve energy while you cook by using these tips for the kitchen.
- Use a microwave oven, toaster oven, or slow-cooker to cook smaller meals. Keep the burners and reflectors on your oven clean so that they will reflect heat better and use energy more efficiently.
- Keep the oven door shut while cooking. Each time you open the oven the temperature decreases 25-75 degrees. Use a timer if your oven does not have a window to know when your food is done cooking.
- Keep your freezer stocked. Food retains cold temperatures, meaning that a full freezer will be more efficient than an empty one. If you do not have a frost-free model, defrost the freezer periodically to ensure the frost does not accumulate more than ¼ inch.
- Set out frozen food to defrost or use the microwave instead of running it under hot water.
- Check the gasket, or seal, in your refrigerator door to make sure it fits properly. A loose gasket will cause cold air to leak out of your refrigerator.
- Get rid of any old refrigerators or freezers you may be keeping for extra food storage. These appliances can cost between $100-150 per year to run.
- Never use your stove or oven for additional heat, this is unsafe.
- Look for ENERGY STAR approved kitchen appliances that will cook more efficiently.