The kitchen is one of the busiest rooms in the home and, consequently, one of the greatest energy users. So it’s not surprising that the kitchen offers ample opportunities to be energy efficient, enabling both the homeowner and the environment to reap the benefits. This year, there’s been a handful of products designed to minimize economic disruption. You’re going to be seeing these products on display as well as a brief description of its energy-saving benefits.
Whether you’re a conscientious cook, a committed conservationist, or maybe just a concerned consumer, there are numerous advantages in making your kitchen more eco-friendly.
Here are a few suggestions to help you achieve your green goals.
- Equip your kitchen with energy-efficient appliances
A wide variety of new appliances can be utilized to minimize wasted power, from quiet dishwashers that use less water and electricity to refrigerators that minimize their electric intake. Newer ovens make preheating almost non-existent, saving valuable energy. There are even range hoods with ventilation fans that use 60 percent less energy than standard models.
The Energy Star label has certified products that lead the field in energy efficiency. Energy Star’s website has user-friendly cost estimators for many products and you can visit to see just how much you will save by buying appliances that aren’t ‘power drains’. Check out energy star certified appliances at energystar.gov.
- Consider adding radiant heating
Radiant heating systems are an eco-friendly way to keep your house comfortable during a late-summer cold snap or a deep-winter freeze. Radiant floor heating is especially useful for the kitchen, where you can install it easily under any flooring type, from tile to hardwood. Many homes inhabited by eco-conscious homeowners hold radiant heating with great esteem as the wider majority have seen its use as an eco-friendly upgrade in green building applications. Instead of using a forced-air system, which distributes dust and allergens through ducts, switch to a modern, efficient, and green form of heating.
Kitchens are a family gathering place. It’s no wonder all of your family members gather around the kitchen table. With so many hours being spent there, radiant floor heating is even more beneficial because you spend a lot of time on your feet. Your family won’t want to leave the comfort of warm floors adding to the warmth of a good meal and lively conversation.
Radiant heating systems gradually send warmth beneath the floor over the span of time you program with a WarmlyYours nSpire Touch Wifi Thermostat. A programmable thermostat relies on its energy-saving ability to activate the heating element when you need and shut off when you don’t. Your radiant heating system can be programmed to turn on during the times when you’re meal-prepping, cooking, and cleaning.
In addition, you can keep track of your energy consumption and change the temperature from an easy-to-use mobile application, conveniently making your thermostat both elegant and functional.
- Use LED or CFL lighting
photo courtesy of Feelswarm
Electric lighting alone accounts for up to 25 percent of the average home energy budget. A single incandescent bulb’s lifetime electricity use costs five to 10 times the original purchase price of the bulb itself. There’s been a technology revolution and you’re going to be witnessing huge steps forward as far as lighting’s concerned. LED (light-emitting diodes) and CFL (compact fluorescent lights) are revolutionizing 21st-century lighting with their energy efficiency.
LED light bulbs are durable, long-lasting, and more efficient than traditional light bulbs, thereby making them more cost-effective. The initial higher expense is offset over time by the longer life span of the bulbs, lowering the cost of your utility bills. LEDs are available in cool white light that is perfect for task lighting or warm light for accent or small area lighting.
Similarly, CFL lighting is more efficient than incandescent bulbs, lasting up to 10 times longer. Additionally, compact fluorescent light bulbs are extremely versatile and can be used in recessed fixtures, table lamps, track lighting, ceiling fixtures, and porch lights. Now, three-way CFL bulbs and dimmable ones are also available for use with dimmer switches.
By outfitting your kitchen with energy-efficient appliances, adding the warmth of radiant floor heating, and installing LED or CFL lighting, you will be well on your way to increasing your kitchen’s green attributes. Both your family and the planet will love you for it.
We want to hear about your experiences and encourage you to share how you increased your green kitchen features by posting a message in the comments section.
Related articles: Heat Takes on a New Meaning in an Average Size Kitchen