These lights consume up to 90% less energy
Enjoying Christmas doesn’t have to come at the cost of our wallets.
As we immerse ourselves in the joy of the holiday season, it’s essential to be mindful of our energy consumption.
The UK cost of living crisis means rising energy bills and according to the Office for National Statistics, 41% of adults who pay energy bills said it was very or somewhat difficult to afford them.
While Christmas may seem like an expensive period, there are practical and sustainable tips to celebrate the season with warmth and cheer while minimising our environmental impact.
From mindful lighting choices to energy-efficient home practices, join us on a journey to make this holiday both merry and eco-friendly.
LED Christmas Lights
There is nothing like the enchanting ambience of a Christmas tree adorned with a cosy, twinkling radiance.
But for 2023, break away from the conventional energy-consuming string lights and embrace LED lights.
These lights consume up to 90% less energy than traditional bulbs and boast impressive durability, shining brightly for up to ten times the lifespan of standard fairy lights.
Additionally, they generate minimal heat, ensuring the safety of little hands reaching for chocolate decorations!
Use a Timer
While the allure of keeping festive lights on all day is tempting, it’s not favourable for your electricity bill or the environment.
UK Power reveals that the average UK household leaves their Christmas tree lights on for over five hours daily, and those with outdoor displays keep them lit for approximately six hours a day.
This translates to an extra 22.8 days’ worth of electricity usage during the Christmas period.
Consider using a timer to illuminate your lights for a few hours at night, minimising their impact during daylight hours. This small adjustment can make a significant difference.
The energy consumption of your car is often overlooked, but during the festive season, it can be higher than usual due to shopping trips and travels to train stations, accumulating mileage.
Additionally, heavy loads of shopping and luggage can impact fuel efficiency.
Plan in advance by organising group journeys whenever possible.
Alternatively, consider leaving the car at home and opting for public transport instead.
Given that everyone is likely to be at home during Christmas, the heating may be in use more frequently.
Consider reducing the thermostat setting to approximately 19°C.
With the increased activity and warmth generated by many people, your reliance on the boiler will decrease.
Even a slight one-degree reduction in temperature can significantly impact your energy consumption.
Check TV Settings
A lot of time will be spent around the TV during Christmas.
To avoid wasting energy, here are some tips to take:
- Make sure the brightness levels are right for your room.
- If your TV has one, switch on the ambient light sensor, which automatically adjusts brightness and contrast settings.
- Enable energy-saving mode.
Christmas is a time for family but it is also a time to enjoy great food.
The oven will be busy on Christmas Day but you can save energy by following a few simple rules:
- Batch dishes together so they cook at the same time.
- Use lids as they help water boil faster, using less energy.
- Open the oven door as little as possible – every time you do, the oven loses heat and has to work harder to return to the original temperature.
Drawing your curtains at dusk not only retains heat but also blocks out drafts.
According to researchers at Edinburgh University, this simple practice could be as efficient as installing double glazing.
Moreover, with the early onset of darkness, there’s no compelling reason to keep them open at this time.
Buy Rechargeable Batteries
The tradition of Christmas morning often involves the familiar words: “Where are the batteries?”
Instead of opting for inexpensive disposable batteries, consider investing in a charger and a set of rechargeable batteries.
Charging batteries as needed proves to be more cost-effective than purchasing new ones, and it is a significantly more environmentally friendly choice.
Turn Off Everything
If you are going on holiday or seeing relatives during Christmas, make sure to check your sockets before you leave.
Turn off anything that will use standby energy unnecessarily.
Known as ‘vampire appliances‘, common devices include TVs, computers and electric heaters.
Use the Fireplace
If you’re fortunate to have a fireplace, take full advantage of it during the festive season.
Beyond its aesthetic appeal, a fireplace serves as a practical and charming source of warmth for your home.
To maximise its heating benefits, be sure to close the doors to rooms that are not in use.
This simple step helps conserve heat and ensures that the warmth generated by the fireplace is effectively distributed throughout your living space, enhancing both comfort and energy efficiency.
As Christmas approaches, let’s reflect on the small yet impactful steps we can take to make our celebrations more energy-efficient.
Fortunately, there are ways to have a more sustainable and mindful festive experience.
By incorporating these tips into our traditions, we not only reduce our environmental footprint but also embrace a responsible and conscious approach to celebration.