CLEANING is one of those jobs no one really enjoys doing, but it could actually save you hundreds of pounds a year.
That's because if you neglect cleaning certain appliances, it's not just unhygienic, but it can be costly too.
From radiators and dehumidifiers to windows and air fryers, each could be costing you up to £800 if you don't keep them squeaky clean.
With energy bills set to rise by £94 for the average household from the new year, we're all looking for ways to save.
Experts at home improvement company Cut My say that the average three-bedroom UK home spends £1,960 in energy consumption every year.
But the team has revealed how you could save up to £800 a year by cleaning certain appliances around your home.
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Below we reveal which items can be the most expensive and how to clean them efficiently.
Cleaning windows – save up to £130 a year
Clean windows do more than just let in light – they also allow heat to enter your home.
South-facing windows can bring in up to 2KW of heat energy, according to Cut My.
Coupled with secondary glazing, clean windows can reduce heat loss by 65%, boosting room temperature by 4°C and reducing the need for excessive heating.
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If you made sure all the windows in your home are squeaky clean, you could save £130 a year, according to the experts.
Cleaning radiators – save £300 a year
A clogged and dusty radiator could spike your heating bills by as much as 25%.
Dust and grime act as insulators, trapping heat around the radiator rather than letting it circulate into your rooms.
It means dirty radiators won't be running as efficiently and you're essentially wasting your hard-earned cash.
Cut My says the best way to clean your radiators is by turning off your central heating and putting a towel underneath the radiator to catch any debris that falls through the radiator.
Then insert a vacuum hose into the radiator and start removing the build-up of dust.
You can also use a radiator brush or a long stick duster to push out any dirt and dust that is hard to reach.
If you live in a three-bed house you could save as much as £300 a year just by keeping the radiators working efficiently.
Cleaning dehumidifiers – save £219 a year
Dehumidifiers have soared in popularity in recent years.
That's because they have several functions including keeping mould and condensation at bay.
They can also speed up the drying process of your clothes too if you use an airer.
Cut My says that overlooking the filter in your dehumidifier can reduce its efficiency, forcing it to work harder and longer.
That therefore means it's costing you more cash.
Regular dusting around the unit and minimizing humidity by using extractor fans or opening windows can help maintain its effectiveness.
This can mean you save as much as £219 a year.
Fridge freezer – save up to £20 a year
We all have a fridge freezer in our homes and we probably don't think to clean them as much as we should.
Simply cleaning and dusting the coils at the back of your fridge can slash energy consumption by up to 30%.
Not only that but defrosting the freezer periodically can also contribute to energy savings.
In fact, these can actually lead to as much as £20 saved a year, the experts say.
Washing machine – save £30 a year
Washing machines are another one of those items that most of us have in our homes.
A dirty washing machine can lead to the need for extra cycles and cost you cash.
But it can also transfer accumulated grime onto your clothes, which is unhygienic but also means you'll likely need additional washes.
You can fix this though with a quick spring clean.
Regularly cleaning the washing machine filter and running hot cycles with white vinegar every six to eight weeks can mean the machine runs as it should.
A clean could potentially save you £30 in bills over a year and costly repairs too.
Vacuum cleaner – save up to £5 a year
Emptying the vacuum cleaner regularly and cleaning the brushes is the key to maintaining its efficiency.
A full dust chamber reduces the item's performance, leading to longer run times and higher energy consumption.
Dirty brushes on a vacuum stop it from picking up dirt and debris requiring longer run times to vacuum the floor.
This leads to higher energy bills too.
Vacuuming twice a week with a clean vacuum will reduce the amount of dust and dirt build up in carpet fibres enabling you to run your vacuum less over the long run.
The experts at Cut My estimate this could save you £5 a year, meaning it's not a huge saving but every little helps.
Kettle – save up to £20 a year
We all use a kettle multiple times a day, whether for our morning cuppa or for cooking pasta for dinner.
Cut My said that most households use the appliance around four times a day on average.
Depending on your kettle, each boil can cost on average 25p so the extra boils can add up.
Limescale build-up inside the kettle affects its efficiency.
That means you'll likely need more boils to reach your desired temperature.
Luckily there are some easy ways to keep the appliance clean.
Using a solution of one part white vinegar and three parts water, boil it and leave it to soak overnight.
This can help restore its functionality and save you up to £20 a year.
Air fryer – save up to £50 a year
Air fryers are another appliance that has become increasingly popular over the past few years.
Most of us probably wouldn't think to give them a deep clean as often as we should though.
Cut My said it's important to make sure the heat dissipation exhaust at the back is clear.
The intake fans which enable an air fryer to work also need to be clean and free of any dust.
A clean basket avoids unnecessarily prolonged cooking times, ultimately saving energy over the long run.
With average cooking times of just 30 minutes, any longer you could be spending an extra £20 – £50 a year on energy bills.
Other ways to save on your energy bills
Switch to solar lights outside
During sunnier days, switching off outdoor lighting and using solar lamps or lights will help cut energy bills.
Close curtains at night
Close your curtains in the evening as temperatures drop to help insulate your home and stop heat from escaping.
This means you are less likely to need to turn the heating on.
Make sure you open the blinds in the morning, especially on sunny days, as the glass will act like a greenhouse to help warm your property.
Use residual oven heat to cook
Ovens remain hot immediately after you have turned them off.
This means you can actually turn them off up to 10 minutes before your food is due out to let the residual heat finish the job for you.
However, don’t take risks with food, and make sure it is piping hot and properly cooked all the way through before eating.
Don’t open the oven when in use
Once you have turned the oven on and put your food in, try not to open the door.
This reduces the temperature and prompts the appliance to use extra energy to bring the temperature back up, and also adds time on to cooking your meal costing you more.
Stopping heat escaping through draughts can save £30 a year on your energy bill, according to Energy Saving Trust.
Draught excluders for under £5 are readily available on Amazon – especially the ones you attach to doors.
Or you can also get them to match your décor or style, we found a cute sausage dog excluder for £4 from Hobbycraft.
Let food cool down
Putting hot food in the fridge can disrupt the temperature forcing the appliance to burn extra energy to cool the space back down.
It’s a similar story if you stand at the fridge with the door open wondering what to eat for longer periods of time.
Insulate your loft
Loft insulation is an investment well worth making to prevent losing heat through your roof.
It is one of the more pricey changes to make but could save you around £300 a year, according to consumer campaign group Which?.
Ideally, you need rolls of insulation that is 270mm thick, according to the EnergyHelpline.
You are looking at paying around £30 for 200mm rolls of five metres – and don’t forget to insulate your loft hatch too.
Boil the kettle with the water you need
The cost of running the kettle over a year mounts up making it one of the most expensive appliances.
Filling the kettle with more water than you need wastes energy and money.
Try using cups of water to fill the kettle so that you only boil what you need.
Turn off devices
It’s estimated a sizeable chunk of electricity used in homes is from appliances that are sitting in standby mode.
This equates to as much as £80 on a bill of £500.
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