Christmas is getting closer than ever! Christmas is a special celebration, and a time where we show your care and love to family and friends. You will spend a lot of time reviewing and celebrating 2021, hosting Christmas parties, and sending and expecting gifts. You may find under the Christmas tree some fantastic goodies. What gifts are you wanting to receive this Christmas? Definitely not a big, fat power bill.
Luckily for Kiwis in Auckland, our Christmas is in the summer when the power is less expensive. However, if you don’t want to see a spike in your bank account, here are some tips from leading Auckland electricians to reduce your Christmas electricity usage without compromising any fun.
Enjoy the holiday at home?
Before blaming anyone else for the increase in electricity usage, expect your power bill to increase due to the fact that you will probably stay indoors more. You can quickly notice the changes in your house’s electricity uses by thinking of the amount of time you will spend on your computer or watching TV or using other home appliances compared to a standard weekday.
Holidays are a great occasion for us to catch up on things we have not had time to do during the year. You can consider spending less time on the phone or computer and start trying something new like renovating the house, practicing some new sports, or finding yourself a new hobby. Moreover, you can encourage your relatives and friends to do the same thing, making this holiday much more memorable.
Are you hosting a Christmas party this year?
We hope you have already prepared for the electricity hit if you are the host of a Christmas party in Auckland this year. Having more family members in your house means there will be additional usage of home appliances like heat pumps, air conditioners, washing machines, and other charged devices. Commonly, we see bigger families have larger power bills; therefore, if your household temporarily doubles or triple the size during Christmas, it will reflect on your power bill.
To deal with the situation, you can start by practicing good power-saving habits. You can also announce “the new rule” to your relatives before they arrive. For example, let’s say your Uncle Roger may not want to change his lifestyle during the time he stays. He likes to take long showers, starts the washing machine with only shorts and some tees, or sets the longest dishwasher cycle. You can set a limit time for a shower to 15 minutes or ask him to put his clothes in the dirty bin and you will wash them for him. You can also consider some more energy-saving tips here.
Cooking all day and night?
Hosting Christmas means you will have to do lots of cooking. Using the oven, stove, and dishwasher more frequently can consume a considerable amount of power. For a normal day, you might use the oven once for dinner for 40 to 60 minutes. On the other hand, you might be using the oven twice or three times a day during Christmas, and the oven will end up running for 6 hours a day, including preheating time. And this is before you even realize the increase of use for stove and dishwasher.
If you are a power-conscious person, think about cooking efficiently – cooking multiple dishes simultaneously. Some dishes are easy to cook, or you can just reheat them before they’re eaten. Besides, if you’re well planning, you can get away with lots of cold dishes that don’t require cooking at all, like salads, snacks, ice cream, or fruits.
The worst part of eating at Christmas is the pile of dishes stacked up after each meal. Whether you’re a dishwasher or a hand-wash household, you will use a lot of hot water and it isn’t free to heat the water. Try to serve the food as smart as possible. Moreover, you can try to give each member a decorated glass to know which one is theirs, so they won’t get confused with all the similar glasses on the table and grab a new one. People can simply rinse their own cups and save an extra dishwasher cycle.
Need extra cooling on hot days?
You can expect that some days in Auckland will be hotter than others, and you may enjoy staying indoors with the AC on for most of the day. With a room full of family members and the sun shining bright outside, keeping cool can chew through a fair chunk of power.
Compare to heating, cooling doesn’t cost as much power. However, there is still an electricity cost to operate the heat pump or AC. Unless you think the extra cost is worth it, you should avoid overusing cooling appliances. You can think of a place with shade where your family can bond together. You can also keep the sun from windows with curtains and turn on fans.
If you are a big fan of the air conditioner, ensure that your air-cons are maintained and checked frequently. Our Auckland and North Shore electricians are willing to do the maintenance if you can’t do it yourself. The dust and dirt in AC filters will force the cooling system to generate more cool air, which means your AC will consume more power than a cleaned one.
Passionate about lighting up your house with Christmas decorations?
Over the last decade, Christmas lights have grown in popularity in New Zealand. People enjoy decorating their houses with multiple LED lights, both interior and exterior. And, it has started to become a decoration competition across the country and within the neighbourhood. The lighting options are varied, and some are heavy reliance. If you like to keep up with the competition, these lights can consume a significant amount of power, which will hit you in your monthly bills.
Well, here is the good news! There are options for alternative decorations like solar-powered lights or a lights system with a control panel. Our Christmas is in the summer which hopefully, there will be plenty of sunlight. These solar-powered lights can be charged during the day and lit up at night. The solar-powered option requires you to invest a bit of money, but they can have a longer life cycle, and you won’t have to pay more on your monthly bills.
Switching on the Christmas lights for a few hours a day won’t have much effect on your power bill, but leaving them running 24/7 will undoubtedly do. With a lighting system that connects to a control panel, you can set up a timer. For example, you can set it to automatically turn on at 8:00 pm and switch off at midnight. By doing that, you will never have to worry about forgetting to turn it off and let the lights on for the whole day and night.
It’s time for gifts!
The most fun part of Christmas is unwrapping presents under the tree. You may feel especially generous this Christmas and decide to gift someone special with electronics. However, some gifts like toy cars, toasters, or speakers may need to be charged or plugged in straight away on Christmas day. And, if each member of your family receives electronic devices like this, your power sockets will get a serious workout. Therefore, think through and do some research before buying these presents, you could get something more power-friendly.
Before buying any electronic as a gift, make sure you check its Energy Rating Label. These labels in New Zealand are standard for measuring the efficiency of each device, and the more stars it has, the more efficient it will be. You won’t want to give your aunty an uneconomic dishwasher that he will have to pay more on his power bill at the end of each month.
In addition, if you buy electronic toys for kids, consider rechargeable batteries or chargers. It will help you reduce the number of new batteries you will have to purchase and help the planet. But remember, electronic toys have a short life cycle, and they are easy to break.
You will be pretty busy this summer, especially if you are hosting Christmas for your extended family. However, it’s a one-in-a-year occasion where you can meet and have fun with your family and friends. Don’t let that big, fat power bill interrupt your time together and ruin your happiness.
If you do not feel like spending too much on electricity costs this summer, please reach out to our qualified electricians. We will arrange a house visit and have all your home appliances, and electricity checked for you. Jenco is happy to help you maintain and replace electronics to ensure power efficiency.
About Auckland Electricians – Jenco Electrical
We are Master Electricians in Auckland providing electrical services across Auckland Central, West Auckland, North Shore, and South Auckland for all residential and commercial electrical needs.
Our team of Auckland electricians can help you with general electrical maintenance, electrical repairs, full or partial rewires, new builds, switchboard installation and repair, kitchen and bathroom renovations and more.
Jenco would love to help you transition to more efficient and affordable energy consumption, including installing heat pumps and EV charging stations. If we can help in any way Contact us today.