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Residential Propane

Know before the snow: Your 2023 Christmas energy saving tips

Christmas energy savings

Lots of our readers have been asking for tips on energy-efficient Christmas lights, and all manner of other fuel-saving hacks. This is hardly surprising.  

Last year, the average U.S. monthly electricity bill rose 13% on 2021. And with inflation stubbornly refusing to subside, millions of us are seeking winter energy saving tips to minimize our bills during the Festive Season and beyond. 

Well, there’s one tip we can recommend right off the bat: adopting propane gas around your home. It’s more efficient than conventional gas or electricity, it can be used for all kinds of purposes and it’s portable, so you can store it wherever you want. Pinnacle Propane has a plethora of options to suit your specific needs, and you can get an intro for domestic propane here.

infographic energy electricity

Christmas energy-saving tips

But there’s loads more you can do to make your Christmas more energy-efficient. And in this post, we’re going to provide a series of proven Christmas energy-saving tips, including: 

  • Efficiency hacks for your Christmas tree and decorations 
  • Energy-saving cooking tips to reduce your kitchen bills before you start your dinner prep.
  • Energy-saving ideas for your entire home, so you can heat your property all winter without burning through your budget. 

Energy-efficient Christmas Lights 

Christmas trees bring joy to our homes throughout December, but they have a lasting impact on our household budgets all year round.  

According to the Department of Energy, the U.S. as a whole uses an estimated 6.63 billion kilowatt-hours (kW h) of electricity during the holiday season. To put that number into perspective, it exceeds the entire annual consumption of over 90 different countries.

infographic electrical consumption

 But this festive favorite doesn’t have to be an energy-waster. In fact, by shopping around and considering our options, we can significantly reduce the cost of our Yuletide lighting rig. 

So, are today’s Christmas lights energy-efficient?

Well, we’ve certainly got more efficient options than we’ve had before. 

For decades, we’ve been using incandescent ‘mini lights’ that rely on an internal filament. Around 90% of their energy produces heat, rather than light. 
Thankfully, however, today’s LED Christmas lights are more energy-efficient than their incandescent predecessors. In fact, the Department of Energy says they use up to 75% less energy and last 25 times longer.  

LEDs rely on illumination from microchips, rather than wasteful internal consumption, and LED strings allow you to run dozens together, which multiplies the savings.  

Kitchen energy-saving tips for Christmas

Ok, so we’ve given you a list of energy-efficient Christmas tree lights. But there’s no point taking care of the tree in your dining room if you’re wasting stacks of energy in the kitchen.

And believe us, turkey and stuffing can be an extremely costly operation. Research from UK energy provider British Gas shows that a full Christmas dinner consumes 56 kilowatt hours of electricity - which equates to a full week’s consumption for the average household.

infographic electricity save

Why is Christmas dinner so energy-heavy?

Unfortunately, Christmas dinner wasn’t designed to be efficient - either for our waistlines or our budgets.

Not only is the festive meal hugely calorific: it takes a huge amount of time to prepare. Although much of the work is done in the oven, which is typically more energy-efficient than a gas hob, this efficiency is negated by the sheer amount of time it takes to cook a turkey.

What’s more, Christmas dinner requires a lot of different dishes. During the rest of the year, we often rely on simple meals that require only one power-source. At Christmas, however, we’re required to create five or six different dishes, each with its own requirements.

And it’s not just the time taken; it’s also the time of day. Many readers will be on flexible tariffs, whose prices rise and fall according to demand. We all make Christmas dinner at roughly the same time, which causes prices to soar.

Ok, so can we adopt any energy-saving cooking tips to reduce the Christmas burden?

Actually, there are a number of different energy-saving cooking tips that will dramatically reduce our kilowatt spend, and we can use them throughout the year - not just at Christmas time

  • Use a slow cooker. Yes, a lot of foodies will be howling at this, but hear us out. Many staples of the Christmas meal - the turkey, the carrots, the pigs in blankets - can all be put into a slow cooker, which has a much lower energy requirement than an oven or a gas hob. Bonus suggestion: Opt for propane-powered gas cooktops for a clever decision during Christmas and to save energy. They offer efficient and instant heat, helping you prepare festive meals faster.
  • Don’t use a full turkey. Many butchers and supermarkets now sell turkey in parts, which can be easier to cook. Turkey legs, for example, are great for those slow cookers.
  • Re-use your water. We’re all guilty of throwing water away occasionally. But if you plan your schedule, you can use the same hot water over and over again. For example, you can boil your parsnips in the same water you’ve used for your potatoes.
  • Use an air fryer. Air fryers are great for cooking vegetables, and they’re also extremely energy-efficient: In fact, the team at technology website CNet believe they require 50% less energy than a typical large oven.

Heating tips to stay warm at Christmas

News flash: heating bills rise during winter.

Ok, you’re right, that’s not exactly news. We all know that we burn more energy when it’s cold. However, what many people don’t know is how to bring these bills down. 

There are lots of simple home energy saving tips that can bring our bill down. And while this article is focused on Christmas, these energy saving tips can be used throughout the winter. In fact, we can apply them all year round.

  • Utilize the sun. Even in winter, sunshine can provide plenty of warmth if we open curtains on our south-facing windows during the day, but close them at night to minimize the chill factor. 
  • Stop the heat leaks. You can often find leaky points around your pipes, doors, windows, AC units… and that lovely old chimney you’re about to decorate. If you find any leaky spots, be sure to add caulk to any static points and weatherstripping around anything that opens and closes (the Department of Energy has a good explainer on this).
  • Set your thermostat to 18-20 degrees. This is very much a sweet spot for home heating, as it’s relatively efficient to maintain. If you feel like you’re getting chilly, shut the door to the room you’re not using and be sure to close those curtains and blinds.
  • Replace your old equipment. Of all the home energy efficiency tips we can give you, this is the most important. Get a professional to check your water heater, thermostat and anything else you use to heat your home. If your equipment is faulty, this is a great time to examine more efficient alternatives. 

Which leads us nicely on to…

The wonders of propane. We mentioned it at the top, but we want to explain the benefits in more detail before signing off, as we think it’s one of the best Christmas energy saving tips you can adopt.

Propane, also known as liquified petroleum gas (LPG), releases more energy per unit, so it gives you a better return on your fuel expenditure than traditional power sources. And it can make your home more environmentally efficient, too.

Some quick facts about propane: 

  • Propane gives you almost twice as much energy as natural gas per cubic foot. [USA Today] 
  • LPG is now used by almost three billion people worldwide.  - [World Bank] 

 infographic facts propane

And for any more Christmas energy saving tips…. 

Be sure to contact us. At Pinnacle Propane, we’re not just committed to providing tailored propane products for your home. We’re also dedicated to making your home more efficient, and sharing the knowledge we’ve gained through years in the business. Let’s chat. Contact us for more information.