No matter how many, alerting headlines it’s took, it’s great that the world is finally becoming more eco-aware. With the countless number of news, detailing the blanket of plastic that floats in our oceans, to how much carbon emissions are putting the world at risk, everyone is taking pride in defending our planet. After all, it’s us and our children who must live here, and no one wants to live in an unclean, unhealthy, toxic environment.
No doubt that you’re fulfilling the duty to recycle as much as you can, and maybe walking more often than driving. However, a lot of environmentally-friendly advice seems to fall on investing in new, greener appliances. While newer models often come with a range of eco-friendly elements, they can be expensive and not all of us can afford to replace our larger appliances just yet. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do your part to help reduce carbon emissions and have an energy-efficient home or workplace.
Together with domestic heat pump experts Daikin, we bring this guide on the best ways to transform your existing appliances into better, greener and more efficient versions of their old selves!
Nip the bud on the night-time stand-by
A lot of us are guilty of leaving the TV on standby all night. Charging our phones overnight when they really don’t need that long. Games consoles left to hum away in the dark. If you’re looking to lower your bills and your carbon footprint, switch them off completely before you go to bed.
According to Energy Saving Trust, the average UK home spends £30 on just appliances that have been left on stand-by. Spending £30 for something you’re not using isn’t good, and worse, it’s not good for the environment.
Dropping the temperature
It’s suggested that your boiler should be replaced every 15 years, however an old boiler can still do a better job of being eco-friendly with a few easy adjustments. Simply turn the thermostat down a few degrees and turn it off at night. You’ll sleep better if your body can cool down anyway, and a few degrees less during the day won’t make you uncomfortable. Consider popping another layer on next time you reach to turn up the thermostat, as usually, this is enough to warm you up!
Cleaning the fridge coils
Just like boilers, fridges tend to last around 10 – 20 years. But if your fridge is coming up for replacement, an eco-friendly model is definitely the way to go.
But bringing our attention to older fridges. When was the last time you cleaned the coils? According to Architectural Digest, cleaning the coils of your fridge can encourage better energy use.
Fridge coils are usually found on either the bottom, top or the back of appliance. Turn your fridge off before you start and remove the base grill if the coils are on the top or bottom or pull your fridge carefully out, so you can see the coils at the back.
Using a fridge coil brush, gathered dirt and debris can be brushed out the appliance. Take the opportunity to sweep the floor too! Then, pop everything back in place. Be sure to wear gloves and be careful when moving your fridge — if it’s too heavy, ask for help moving it.
Cleaning the dryer filter
Next, draw your attention to your dryer. The filters are meant to be cleaned after every use, but everyone has forgotten once or twice…
First clear out any lint that has gathered in the filter, then pour a little water on the filter screen to see if the water passes through it. If it doesn’t and pools on top of the filter, your filter needs a thorough cleaning. Give it a good scrubbing in soapy, warm water, then rinse it off and try pouring a little water through again. If it still pools a little, repeat your soap-water attack on the filter!
Cold water washes
The washing machine can be easily become environmentally friendly by cooling down a little. Opt to wash your clothes on a cold wash setting for the following benefits beyond saving the planet:
- Protect colour vibrancy
- Protect elastics
- Better stain removal (warm water actually keeps the stain in!)
- Money saving
Making the most of dishwashers
Keeping the dish washer working hard; be sure you putting in a full load before setting your dishwasher off. Also, be sure to have your full load placed efficiently in the dishwasher to fit in as much as possible without compromising on cleaning.
Tree Hugger advises that, if your model has the option to, turn off its drying cycle and just let your dishes air dry. You can open the door at the end and leave them overnight to dry off.
A good air-conditioning system can provide effective relief from an overly-warm home. But, like any other appliance, it needs a little TLC every now and again to keep it working effectively and prevent any overuse of energy.
Greener Ideal recommends getting a professional out to inspect your air-conditioning unit to make sure it is still running efficiently and effectively. If your system is making any strange noises, best to give a professional a call.
There’s plenty of ways older appliances can still do their bit to be environmentally friendly! Take these tips on board and your home and workspace can be its greenest. When the time does come to replace your older appliances, be sure to keep in mind whether or not it is energy efficient. For example, if you're looking to replace an old, noisy air conditioning unit, your main focus might be on a quiet model. But don't neglect to check how exco-friendly it is! With a quality air conditioning unit from a supplier such as Daikin, you can have both an energy efficient and quiet air conditioning system.