As we add more technology in our homes, it is changing the way we do almost everything. The appliances you use in the kitchen have a big impact on your energy bill. Technology has helped with making kitchen appliances easier to use and more energy-efficient. Kitchen technology makes cooking simpler, faster, and even more tasteful for many people. It can also help you save money on your utility bills. While kitchen technology is becoming smart, it can also be a smart move to not use your traditional appliances in favor of other technology, which uses less energy.
Energy Efficient Appliances
Kitchen appliances like refrigerators and dishwashers are the biggest energy hogs in your kitchen. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), refrigerators alone used about 7 percent of the average American household's energy in 2015.
The yellow EnergyGuide label on most appliances helps you estimate the appliance's energy consumption, efficiency, and operating costs. You can compare its energy use with other models to help you save money on your utility bills. More energy-efficient technology comes with lower operating costs. Due to advancements in technology, new appliances typically use less energy than older models, and efficient ENERGY STAR-rated appliances use significantly less energy than traditional models.
ENERGY STAR rated appliances often also qualify for purchase price rebates from your utility, tax credits, or sales tax exemptions.
Your refrigerator is one of the most energy-intensive appliances in your home. While new technology makes refrigerators more energy efficient, the trend towards bigger appliances can increase overall energy consumption. Refrigerator design also matters; refrigerators with top-mounted freezers typically use less energy than others.
A big influence on your fridge's energy consumption is how often and how long you open the refrigerator door. Modern refrigerators have see-through doors or cameras and displays that show their contents. You can choose your item before opening the fridge and quickly close the door again. Some models let you open the refrigerator door compartment independently to better keep the cold air inside the main fridge, and temperature management systems save energy by maintaining the ideal temperature. Using modern technology, current ENERGY STAR-rated refrigerators use at least 10 percent less energy than standard models.
Another energy intensive appliance in your kitchen is the dishwasher. Dishwasher technology has improved over the years, and modern ENERGY STAR rated dishwashers use 12 percent less energy than traditional models. They also use less water, saving you money on your water bill as well. Programmable dishwashers have options to delay the start time or skip the drying cycle.
Microwave ovens are designed for fast cooking, which reduces their energy consumption by up to 80 percent compared to conventional ovens, stoves, or toasters for the same food. Use a microwave to reheat your food, to cook or steam microwavable food. Microwave ovens use electromagnetic waves to induce water molecules in your food to vibrate, which makes it hot.
Electric kettles boil water faster while using less energy than microwaves or stoves. Marks on the kettle help you measure the right amount of water to save both energy and water. If you want to save energy, consider using an electric kettle to boil your water.
The energy efficiency of your cooking range or stove mainly depends on the heating technology it uses. While the different technologies and fuel sources have advantages and disadvantages, the most efficient technology is induction cooktops. According to the Department of Energy (DoE), induction cooktops are 14 percent more efficient than traditional electric cooktops.
Magnetic induction technology uses electromagnets to conduct heat directly to your pot or pan. The cookware heats up quickly, reducing cooking times and using less energy. Induction requires ferromagnetic pots and pans.
Convection ovens use up to 20 percent less energy than standard ovens. They save energy because the convection oven cooks food faster and at a lower temperature, making it more energy-efficient than a traditional oven.
Convection ovens have a setting to use fans to circulate the hot oven air around your food while keeping the temperature more uniform. As a result, food cooks faster, more evenly, and more efficiently. In convection ovens, you can cook multiple items simultaneously, which decreases the overall cooking time further. See-through glass doors help you open the door less often and conserve energy.
Advantium ovens use a combination of convection and microwave technology to shorten overall cooking times. Radiant convection heat cooks the outside of your food, while microwaves cook the inside. Faster cooking times save energy and money on your electric bill. If your oven is smart, you can also adjust the oven temperature or turn it off remotely.
Crock-Pots And Pressure Cookers
Both crock-pots and pressure cookers use less energy than an oven or stovetop, even considering they take longer cooking times. Slow cookers and pressure cookers are insulated, and modern devices come with temperature management systems that cycle the devices off and on to maintain your desired temperature. Pressure cookers work more efficiently than crock-pots because the energy and heat are sealed inside.
Warming drawers or hot-food-holding cabinets use less energy than ovens or microwaves use to heat or reheat food. ENERGY STAR-rated models have better insulation to reduce heat loss and come with magnetic door gaskets and automatically closing doors. It makes them up to 60 percent more energy-efficient than standard models.
Smart Food Thermometers
With a smart food thermometer, you can monitor your food temperature from your smart device. This can help you turn off the oven or stovetop right away when your food is done and save energy.
Smart plugs can be used to control your kitchen appliances. You can turn off devices such as slow cookers remotely or after a programmed time. With smart plugs, you can also integrate your kitchen technology into home automation systems.
Copper is one of the most conductive metals available, and it's relatively inexpensive. Due to the high conductivity, copper cookware heats up quickly. You can save money with copper pots and pans because the shorter cooking time means you're using less energy.
Kitchen Technology Helps You Save Money
While high-efficiency ENERGY STAR-rated refrigerators and dishwashers can significantly reduce your energy usage, other technology also makes the cooking process more efficient. From the type and quality of the cookware you use to the way you boil the water for cooking, you can minimize electricity use with the right kitchen appliances.