Kempen A lot of energy can be saved if you consider a few things when heating, washing or cooking. This can also save you a lot of money.
The Federal Energy Conservation Decree, which includes short-term energy conservation measures, has been in effect since September 1. It is valid until the end of February and stipulates, for example, that public buildings and monuments can no longer be illuminated for representative reasons only, that the room temperature in offices does not exceed 19 degrees. But with fall and winter in sight, citizens are also being asked to save as much energy as possible now – and costs are rising massively. “Last but not least, we are also making a significant contribution to climate protection through savings,” says Kempen city spokeswoman Johanna Mushalik-Jaskolka. As the city’s communications officer, she and Kempen’s climate manager Marie Roosen are presenting ways to save energy – and therefore money – at home.
The heat “Depending on the room, the comfortable temperature can vary,” Roosen and Muschalik-Jaskolka explain. In the living room, 20 degrees is perfect, in the bedroom 18 degrees is enough. If you lower the heating, you should consider: It should not be colder than 16 degrees, otherwise there is a risk of mold. In order for warm air to be distributed optimally in the room, radiators should not be directly covered by furniture or curtains. If the heater is gurgling, there’s probably air in it – then it’s using more energy without actually getting hot. Then it should bleed, you can do it yourself. Climate manager Roosen also recommends a hydraulic balance for heating from a specialist company.
seal The gaskets should be replaced on the dryer windows, and then the cracks in the open doors can also be sealed. If you want to keep the heat in the rooms, it is better to close the doors or put a curtain so that the warm air from the living room does not flow to the stairs. Heat is also lost through louvre boxes and radiator niches, especially in older buildings. But they can be easily insulated, just like heating pipes.
ventilation When it’s cold outside and the heating is on inside, you don’t have to open the window forever, but ventilate it for a few minutes every day, Roosen recommends. To do this, the windows are fully opened (turn down the heating in advance).
pull the plug The small red light on the TV and other devices indicates: The device is in standby mode. “Even if it’s not being used, it’s constantly consuming electricity,” warns Roosen. According to the Federal Environment Agency, costs of around 4 billion euros per year are incurred by German households. If you pull the plug or turn the switch using a plug, you can save up to 115 euros per household.
Proper cooling When buying new refrigerators and freezers, you should pay attention to a good efficiency class. But even without a new refrigerator, energy can be saved. “The optimal temperature of the refrigerator is six to seven degrees, in the freezer it is -18 degrees,” explains climate manager Roosen. Warm food should be allowed to cool before refrigerating and the fridge or freezer door should only be opened briefly if possible. Freezers should be defrosted regularly if they do not have an anti-freeze function. The location is also important: The refrigerator should not be placed directly next to the stove, oven or radiator.
To wash The climate manager advises using the washer and dryer only when they are full. If the clothes are normally dirty, 30 or 40 degrees is enough instead of 60, and you can do without pre-washing. You save a lot of money if you don’t use the dryer and let your clothes air dry.
cook Energy can also be saved during cooking. Food in the pot heats up faster when you put the lid on. If you only need water for pasta, soup or tea, you can easily boil the water in the kettle. You should only boil as much water as you actually need. The following applies to the oven: It is not always necessary to preheat it, even if it is stated in many recipes. “In fact, you can do without it for most dishes and instead extend the baking time by a few minutes,” advises Roosen. You also save energy if you bake with hot air or convection instead of using top and bottom heat.
wash Using a dishwasher can be more efficient than washing dishes by hand – at least if you follow a few tips. The dishwasher should be loaded as much as possible, and you should also activate the economy program. As a result, the machine runs a little longer, but uses less water and energy. Alternatively, low temperature programs (45 to 55 degrees) can also be used. In addition, you should not wash the dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, and you should always consider whether you will need a piece of container later, such as a glass of water.
take a shower It’s better to take a short shower than a full bath – and turn off the water in the shower when you’re lathering up. A water-saving shower head also helps reduce water consumption. Cold water is sufficient when washing hands and turn off the water when washing with soap.
Turn off One of the energy saving tips from the city of Kempen is to simply read a book instead of turning on the TV. Economical lighting is recommended: Turn on the light only where necessary and use LED bulbs (also for fairy lights). The following applies to screens: Large devices, even those with a very good efficiency class, consume more energy than small devices – fewer inches can be enough. Laptops are a powerful alternative to desktop computers and also use less energy. A tablet uses even less energy. If a device is not currently in use, it goes into power saving mode or hibernates. You have to do without a screen protector. To save additional power, accent lighting for controllers or keyboards can also be turned off.