Cool Savings: 9 ways to keep your kitchen cool

Here in Minnesota, we tend to think of energy savings in terms of heat. But as summer swings into gear, it’s just as important to stay cool efficiently, for your health as well as your budget.

This second Cool Savings article focuses on what can be one of the hottest places in the house: the kitchen. From keeping the fridge full to simply cooking at the right time, reducing the heat in the kitchen can save you big time.

Interested in more cool savings? Check out 5 tips to set up for summer and stay tuned for more cool savings articles.

 

Ovens

Ovens and stovetops can be some of the biggest offenders in heating up a home. Here are some simple ways to heat your food without heating up.

Keeping your kitchen cool

  1. Save your cooking for the late shift.When the sun goes down, the house cools off and this can help offset some of the heat from the oven.
  2. Cook big. Reheating leftovers uses up much less heat than cooking a full meal. And keeping your refrigerator full helps it stay cool.
  3. Cooking on the stove? Cover the whole burner- if you can see the coils, you’re heating the air instead of the dish. If you have an electric stove, reduce the cooking time by a few minutes- the burner stays hot enough to keep cooking without using up more electricity.
  4. Forget the preheat Most dishes don’t require the oven being warmed up beforehand and the less time the oven is on, the less wasted heat.
  5. Clean your oven Those spills and burns are not only unsightly, but can cause your oven to heat unevenly and waste energy.

Refrigerators

It’s strange to think about refrigerators as a source of heat, but all that keeping cool means that the machine heats up. By helping your refrigerator save energy, you can not only save money but also keep your house cooler.

Saving money with your refrigerator

  1. Keep your fridge cool, but not too cool. Stick to 37 to 40 degrees in the refrigerator and about 5 degrees for the freezer.
  2. Move your refrigerator from the sun and the stove Refrigerators can be tough to move, but that extra heat can heat up the compressor so that it works overtime.
  3. Let food cool off before you put it in the fridge. Hot food can heat up the refrigerator and again, make it work harder to stay cool.
  4. Keep your fridge and freezer well stocked. These foods will hold the cold, which means less energy to cool empty space. If you don't have enough food to fill the space, keep bottles of water on the doors to act as insulators. These can also be a nice treat on hot summer days as well.

Stay tuned for more cool savings tips. Next week- simple ways to cool down without air conditioning.