Become the King of Your Kitchen with These Energy-Saving Tips Clean the coils As dirt and dust accumulates on the condenser coils below or behind your refrigerator, the air can’t flow freely. Keeping them free and clear of debris will mean your fridge doesn’t have to work as hard, so you can save energy. To dislodge dust around the coils, use a long, thin tool known as a refrigerator-coil brush to gently vacuum the area with a brush attachment. Don’t wait to turn off the burner Your oven and electric burners stay hot long after they’ve been switched off. Instead of wasting that heat, turn off your stove or burner when your food is almost ready and let the residual heat do the rest of the cooking. Match the burner to the pot When a small pot is placed on a large burner, a lot of energy is wasted. Be sure to use a burner that matches the size of your pot to maximize your heat while cooking. Close the door quickly Sometimes deciding what to get out of the fridge is a difficult decision, but that open door accounts for 7% of the appliance’s total energy use as cold air escapes and warm air rushes in. Instead, plan ahead and keep the door closed as much as possible. Ditch the dry cycle A dishwasher’s heated dry cycle can add up to 50% to the appliance’s operating costs. Simply switch off the dry cycle before you run it and open the door when the cycle is complete to let your dishes air-dry. Keep it clean Burner pans on your stovetop do more than just catch those inevitable spills — the shiny surface reflects heat up to the cookware. When they’re dirty and blackened from heavy use, they absorb a lot of the heat they could be reflecting, so be sure to keep them clean and shiny. Consider new appliances Older appliances can waste a lot of energy. If it’s time to replace your old-faithfuls, look for the ENERGY STAR® rating. Available in stoves, refrigerators, freezers and dishwashers, these energy-efficient appliances use 10–50% less energy and water than standard models. Now that your kitchen is energy efficient, see how you can save energy in your living room!