Easter is usually a time for your thoughts to be consumed by chocolate, bunnies, eggs, religious celebrations and did we mention chocolate? Maybe you celebrate with a family feast and a chocolate egg hunt at home, or maybe it’s a time for you to take a break away for a few days; either way, it’s a highly anticipated part of the year for most.
What you may not have thought of though, is that it’s also a great time to think about how you’re using energy in and around your home, setting you up for an ‘eggscellent’ remainder of the year.
Cooking up a feast
As well as the traditional Easter treats such as hot cross buns, families in Australia often celebrate Easter with a traditional lamb roast with all the trimmings. While this sounds mouth watering, having your oven on all day will not be so good for your next energy bill.
This year, try something a bit different and cook your lamb in the barbeque. Not only will it be delicious, you’ll avoid heating up the kitchen and help keep your energy bill under control.
If you’re using your stovetop to prepare side dishes, be sure to choose pots that cover each element completely, enabling the contents of the pot to be heated evenly and avoiding energy waste caused by placing small pots on big elements.
Take a moment to dig through your pots and pans drawer to find the matching lids as well; liquids will boil quicker and dishes will cook at lower heat settings, reducing the amount of energy consumed.
And at the end of the meal, don’t fight over whose turn it is to do the dishes. If you load up the dishwasher, take comfort in knowing it’ll use about the same amount of energy as washing three loads of dishes by hand. Sit back and eat the kid’s chocolate instead.
If you load up the dishwasher, take comfort in knowing it’ll use about the same amount of energy as washing three loads of dishes by hand. Sit back and eat the kid’s chocolate instead.
If Easter is all about heading away for a break, then there are a few things you can do to stop your energy bills hopping away from you.
Before you hit the road, don’t forget to unplug any appliances that you won’t need while you’re away: the microwave, TV, DVD player, computers and that extra fridge hiding in the garage. By turning off unused appliances at the power point, you could save around 2 kWh of electricity a day.
If you want to give the appearance of seeming like you are home for security reasons, hang some washing on the line and don’t just leave the lights on. Instead, try plugging a few lamps into timers around your home. They’ll switch on and off at set times; potentially reducing both your energy bills and risk of leaving your house unattended.
If you’re more of a home bunny over the Easter break, taking the opportunity to catch up on a movie or getting out into the garden, then there are a few simple things to keep in mind to make sure you don’t over-egg your energy bills.
Whether you’re snuggling on the couch, or enjoying the sunshine outside, remember to dress for the weather. It can be unpredictable at this time of year, so if you’re feeling chilly, don’t reach for the heater, instead pop on a jumper. If you’re feeling the heat, then try taking off a layer of clothing or switching on a fan before you turn on the air-conditioner.
It’s also a great time to enjoy a bit of DIY handy work. A simple activity is to check for gaps around windows and doors. If they’re poorly sealed, they can account for up to 25 percent of heat loss from that room.1 Invest in some draught stripping and seal any gaps before the winter weather starts to seep inside.
Australian homes can use up to 40 percent of their household energy consumption on heating and cooling,2 so by keeping these tips front of mind, you’ll have a very happy Easter.