Spring cleaning is a bit more tolerable if you know it’s saving you some cash!

Depending on your attitude to household chores, a good spring clean can be very therapeutic. It’s a time to throw open the windows and doors, cast out the dust and clutter of the cold months, and welcome a warmer and sunnier season. It’ll take on a new meaning for a lot of us this year, too, after so long spent confined inside because of lockdown.

But a deep clean isn’t just good for your psyche, it’s also good for your wallet! Here’s how a bit of household elbow grease could save you energy and bring your bills down in the process.

Related: Top tips for green cleaning

  1. Clean your windows

Often you won’t even realise how grubby your windows are until you give them a good clean (glasses-wearers will definitely be familiar with this!). Clean windows allow you to make the most of natural sunlight and therefore rely less on turning the lights on.

  1. Dust everywhere

Dust is not only bad news for your home’s air quality, but when it’s left to gather on electronic appliances, light bulbs and air vents it can hinder energy efficiency, too. Like your windows, you might be surprised at how bright your TV or laptop screen is once it’s had a wipe down – you might even be able to adjust the display settings, which will help save even more energy.

  1. De-scale the kettle

Left to its own devices, over time your kettle will build up a thick layer of lime scale on the inside – more so over winter when you’re making hot water bottles and having cups of tea a bit more often. Give it a good clean inside and out so that the energy you use to boil the water isn’t being wasted on heating lime scale instead.  The same applies it your central heating system – ask your plumber to look into this during your annual boiler check.

  1. Degrease your oven

It’s easy to let your oven get a bit greasy and grubby, especially since it’s the kind of dirt that builds up slowly and unnoticeably over time. But all that caked-on grease and food is hampering its ability to work efficiently. Heat that should be used to cook your food is actually being wasted heating up dirt, so the oven has to work harder to achieve the right temperature And it smells!

Related: Nine ways to have a greener kitchen

  1. Defrost the freezer

If there’s a big build-up of ice in your freezer, it’s time to defrost it. If there’s unnecessary ice in the freezer then the appliance has to work extra hard to keep it cold, when really it should only have to keep your food cold. Getting rid of this excess ice means your freezer will run more efficiently and it’ll free up space. If yours is frequently over-icing you probably need to turn its settings down.

  1. Clean behind the fridge

While we’re on the subject of fridge freezers, when was the last time you had a look behind yours? It might not be a pretty sight. Those coils on the back on your fridge are its ventilation system, and when they get covered in dust and grime they can become clogged, which means the appliance has to work harder, and therefore use more energy, to do its job.

  1. Check your tumble dryer ducts

You’re probably in the habit of cleaning out your tumble dryer’s lint catcher, but the machine’s external ducts and pipes need regular TLC, too – your appliance’s user guide will have info on the location of these. Dirt, dust and all those random things that end up in pockets can easily work their way into these ducts and cause blockages, meaning the dryer has to work harder to achieve the correct temperature levels.

  1. Vacuum your radiators

Your radiators might look spick and span on the outside, but have you ever peered into the grills on top or behind them? The amount of dust that ends up settling there can be shocking! Use a slim-line attachment on your vacuum to get in there and hoover up all this fluff and dirt. This will mean your heating system doesn’t have to work so hard to achieve the temperature you specify on the thermostat.

The bottom line

A lot of us are planning on having a big clear out and tidy at this time of year, so why not add these jobs to your to-do list? They can be ticked off pretty quickly and without any specialist equipment, and will definitely have a positive impact on your bills, as well as your carbon footprint.

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