One thing most homeowners have in common is the watchful eye they keep on electric costs. During the winter, those costs can rise due not only to the expense of heating your home, but also because of the big family meals that seem to stack up at this time of year. A homeowner’s choice of appliances can have an impact on utility costs, so we’ve lined up a helpful guide to help you make energy-smart decisions while you’re keeping your crowd fed.
- Slow cookers are an all-season favorite. During summer, when you want to serve hot meals without heating your kitchen, they can be extremely helpful. In the winter, though, their efficiency is questionable. The advantage of a slow cooker is that it saves time spent in the kitchen during this season in which most of us are constantly running. On the other hand, slow cookers use about the same amount of energy as electric ovens; while slow cookers run continually, ovens cycle on and off during the cooking process. Additionally, slow cookers can only be used to prepare one thing at a time. If coming home to a hot one-dish meal is your priority, go with a slow cooker; otherwise, your oven offers you the ability to cook multiple items.
- A pressure cooker can save both time and energy. For those homeowners unable to plan meals far enough in advance to make a slow cooker worthwhile, a pressure cooker can be a good option. Used on the stovetop, a pressure cooker uses steam to cook food quickly, saving time and energy while preserving the nutritional value of the food. The down side of pressure cooking is that you can’t easily check on the food while it’s cooking, and it’s easy to overcook.
- Microwaves take far less time to cook food than traditional ovens. Because they cook so rapidly, microwave ovens can really cut energy costs; using a microwave instead of your oven four times each week can save you about $20 on your electric bill in a year.
- Want to really invest in stepping up your energy conservation? A solar oven is by far your most energy-efficient option. Available as hybrids with electric backup, these ovens use up to 75% less energy than conventional electric ranges.
Cirro Energy has deep roots in Texas and loves being close to the homeowners and communities we serve, providing energy to families across this great state. To connect with other Cirro customers, follow Cirro Energy on Facebook and Twitter, or visit the Cirro Energy website to learn more about how we can help your family find the best utility plan to fit your lifestyle.