If the recent (yet again?) water price hike is anything to go by, the only direction one’s utility bills are going is up! And boy, do we all feel the pinch. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a household who isn’t practicing some form of water/energy saving habit in Singapore these days.
But beyond the usual ‘switch off your power sockets when not in use’ or ‘reuse graywater’ pieces of advice, using the right fittings, appliances or home items can go a long way in helping you reduce costs too! So up your money-saving game – invest in these home items that can help you spend less on bills in the long run.
1. Air-Conditioners with 5 Energy Ticks
No surprise there –air conditioners are the biggest energy eaters, making up 36% of a typical household’s monthly electricity bill. If you can’t live without your trusty AC in this sweltering heat, go for an energy-efficient model with 5-ticks which could save you an extra $270* a year.
Besides having 5 energy-ticks, Daikin’s SMILE series of inverter air-conditioners even comes with helpful energy-saving features, such as its Intelligent Eye function, which uses infrared sensors to track human movement. The air conditioner automatically reduces its output when it senses no one in a room.
*Compared to 2-tick models. Based on an 8-hour runtime and rate of $0.27/kWh
2. LED Lights
If you haven’t jumped on the LED bandwagon – it’s time you should. While they may be slightly more expensive than traditional incandescent (60W) and fluorescent (12W) lights, a 9W LED light bulb uses less energy and can last up to 20 times longer! For about $9 for a set of 4, these pendant lamp LED light bulbs are a worthy investment that won’t burn your pockets.
You can even go a notch further with smart LED lamps that come equipped with all sorts of nifty energy-saving features! Our pick? Yeelight’s range of smart, colour-changing LED ceiling lamps. Controlled via a smartphone app, one can create customized commands that can be used for different scenarios, like toggling the lamp to automatically turn off at certain timings. And if you’re the forgetful type, the ceiling lamp can be remotely switched off too – helping you save on any unnecessary expenses.
3. Smart Power Plugs
It’s easy to talk about switching off unused power outlets to conserve energy – but actually doing it? More a hassle than you'd expect. So, why not let smart plugs do the job for you? Consider getting this smart WiFi-enabled plug by leegoal, which comes with a UK plug and two USB outlets to suit most types of appliances and electronics.
Users can remotely turn the power supply on and off via the plug’s smartphone app, or schedule timings to save energy when not in use. Even cooler? The smart plug supports Amazon Alexa voice control, which means you can literally use your voice to control your power socket.
4. Dryer Balls
Not only used for softening clothes, dryer balls can actually reduce your dryer’s power consumption. How? When placed with a load of wet laundry, dryer balls help to separate damp clothes from one another, allowing clothes to aereate, absorb in hot air and dry quicker. The result is less time on the dryer cycle – and reduced electricity bills! Made from natural wool, these eco-friendly dryer balls claim to reduce drying time by 25%, reduce static cling and prevent bacteria growth.
5. Tap Aerators
We might not think much of it, but a typical tap can use up to 9 litres per minute (shocker). So equip your bathroom, kitchen or service yard taps with screw-on aerators that allow you to get a powerful flow with less water. There are all sorts of aerators available, from simple, metallic ones to this 3-in-1 tool that allows you to toggle between 3 reduced water flow modes for all types of cleaning.
6. Atomised Water Fixtures
Step aside low flow showerheads and taps - atomized water fixtures are set to be the next big thing in lowering water consumption at home! Using micro-droplets (basically mist and steam) to hydrate surfaces, the result is an efficient water flow that makes the most of every drop.
Check Out: Nebia Shower Head, US$399 on Nebia
For taps, consider getting the Altered:Nozzle, an attachable nozzle that uses 98% less water (compared to a typical tap) by converting the water supply to high-pressure, high-speed mist. Likewise, the ultra-sleek Nebia showerhead uses atomized water sprays to reduce water consumption by 70%. While they are definitely pricier than their low-flow counterparts, they’d probably pay themselves back in a year or two in terms of savings for your water bills.
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