Whisper it, but the right kettle can really save you some money, as Boris claimed this week.
So whether you’ve been thinking about replacing that dirty old microwave or you want a kettle with a whistle to tell you when your tea is ready, these smart moves could save you money in the long run.
From stoves to deep fryers, here are some smart replacements to help you cut your energy bills.
Try an air fryer
Air fryers have exploded in popularity recently, and for good reason. Essentially miniature affordable ovens with heating elements and a fan, they deliver crisp, juicy results at lower temperatures and faster cooking times than traditional ovens. Not only that, but they are also significantly more efficient, making them cheaper to run.
While the exact costs will vary depending on your appliances and prices, once you factor in the longer preheat time, cooking time and higher temperature required of a standard oven, the humble air fryer will be about twice as cheap to use.
According to recent research by Iceland and energy supplier Utilita, the average air fryer will cost just 14p per day (or £52.74 per year) in typical use. Considering the fact that electric and gas cookers cost around £316 and £264 a year respectively, it might even be time to start cooking your weekly steak in the trusty air fryer too.
The new Double Basket Air Fryer comes with two separate baskets to cook different food at the same time – giving you twice the cooking time.
Buy it for £139.99 from Lakeland.
Whistle a little
If you have a gas stove, you might consider switching from your energy-intensive electric kettle to a traditional stovetop alternative instead. The significant price difference between gas and electricity means you can pocket a little extra cash.
One engineer and academic even demonstrated this on his TikTok account (username: dinosaurdannyx) by calculating the energy/cost differences between boiling water on a gas stove versus a regular electric kettle.
The bottom line shows that while the gas hob uses more energy, it costs around half – 1.99p vs 3.94p – due to the lower cost of gas. Boris yesterday urged savers to buy a new electric kettle. And if you use a supplement, just measure the water you need, as less boiling saves energy.
You can choose a stylish stainless steel teapot, gray marble effect with built-in whistle from Amazon.
But if you’re measuring water consumption in an electric kettle, Dualit’s Classic Kettle includes a super-fast 3KW element for rapid boiling.
Buy it for £134.95 from Dualit.
(Don’t) pull the plug
Investing in a set of smart plugs with energy monitoring capabilities is a great way to keep track of how much power your most used devices are drawing, even when they’re on standby.
As well as learning where you can reduce consumption, they are a great way to turn everything off automatically and with a simple voice assistant command. And if you’re the type to worry about whether you’ve left your press on, the remote app check is a godsend.
TP-Link’s Tapo Smart Plug lets you remotely control your devices, turning them on and off at your leisure, with the added bonus of showing how much power each device is using in its handy app.
Buy it for £9.49 from Amazon.
If you’re overwhelmed with an electric stove, then you have one of the most expensive cooking tools around. Although the thought of replacing it may fill you with dread, you can always pick up a portable gas hob from just £15.
With easily replaceable gas bottles, they are the same ones people use on camping trips. You might even already have one rattling around in the shed.
Even better, if you have a gas barbecue hidden in the garden, give it new life as an outdoor stove. Close the lid and you essentially have a convenient (and cheap) outdoor oven.
Just £15 can get you a portable gas camping stove small enough to fit in a cupboard when not in use but powerful enough to cook up a storm. A pack of four extra gas cylinders costs £10.
Buy it from Halfords for £15.
Ride the wave
There’s a lot more to microwave ovens than reheating meals and disappointing ready meals. Used properly, they are a great culinary tool in their own right, and there are plenty of delicious microwave recipes out there.
A few staples include microwave rice and steamed vegetables, both of which are incredibly easy and quick to make. The real benefit, however, is how cheap they are to run. According to Utilita’s research, a microwave oven is even cheaper than an air fryer, costing on average around 8p a day or £30.03 a year.
The Russell Hobbs microwave has a sleek, minimalist design while providing all the microwave features you could ask for. At 800W, it’s powerful enough to handle anything you throw at it
Buy it for £69.99 from Amazon.
If your washing machine has recently given up the good fight, you can replace it with a higher capacity, more efficient model. The new Samsung Series 5 may seem expensive at first, but its huge 11kg capacity means you can wash more at once, using less water and energy in the process.
You can also play it smart and wash during off-peak hours between 10pm and 5am (smart washing machines with timer functions are great for this), which further helps keep costs down. If the clothes are not heavily soiled, you can also wash at 30C to use less energy and do consecutive loads to make the most of the retained heat from the previous load.
Buy it for £529 from Samsung.
Wipe away your tears
Tumble dryers are not energy-saving devices, but a few tricks can help. When buying a machine, check the energy rating, which ranges from A+++ to G. Help your current machine by keeping the air filters free of lint and making sure your washing machine drains as much water as possible from the load.
A short additional spin cycle will save the cost of more time in the dryer. Stack duvet covers together to prevent smaller items from getting lost inside, detangle clothes so they dry faster and keep your dryer in a well-ventilated room.
Drying clothes is a huge expense as well as a hassle, but the new Miele TEF765 WP 8kg Eco Speed Green Performance Tumble Dryer claims it can cut drying time on a full load by 40 minutes and eliminates 99 per cent of all bacteria.
Buy it from around £999 from Miele.
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