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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Burgess

Times Are Hard


In the U K and around the world times are tough and are getting tougher.

Here are a few small tips on how to save money on your gas and electric.

If you are making a cup of tea or coffee then you can put enough water in your cup to where you want it and then put it in the microwave for 1,2 or 3 minutes. You will have to work out how long it needs to be in there for.

This method of heating up a cup of water for your tea or coffee works out cheaper than boiling a kettle.

When you put water in the kettle there is usually a minimum mark on the side of the kettle for how much water to put in. This is nearly always more than one cup of water. You could put one cup of water in your electric kettle but I would suggest you keep an eye on it and switch it off immediately the water begins to boil, just in case you are going to ruin the kettle by not having the water come up to the makers' little mark.

Someone did a test on boiling cups of water for tea and coffee.

They said that putting a cup of water in the microwave worked out cheaper than boiling the kettle.

But they also said that putting a cup of water in a saucepan and boiling it on the gas was even cheaper. This is because gas is cheaper than electricity. Probably one third cheaper.

I now tend to boil a cup of water in a saucepan for my tea or coffee. I always have a lid on it as this keeps the heat in and the water comes to the boil quicker.

I also put the lid back on after putting the water in my cup as this also keeps the saucepan warm for my next cup of tea or coffee.

I have never much bothered with people and methods where they say to keep the lid on your saucepan but now times are getting tougher by the minute I am becoming much more aware of how much gas and electricity I use. I am becoming much more frugal.

I often steam potatoes and vegetables. I also eat a lot of boiled eggs.

So now, when I am steaming my vegetables I place my eggs in the bottom saucepan along with the boiling water that is steaming the vegetables and hey-presto - once again I am saving money by cooking more than one thing on the one gas hob.

Also if you cut your potatoes and veg up smaller then they will take a shorter time to cook - again saving money for you.

Another thing here about heating water is that our boiler is in an upstairs room. I have no idea why and we cannot afford to have it, or a new one, put in a downstairs room. There are no water facilities in the upstairs of our house so why the boiler is up there I have not got a clue.

As all the water appliances are downstairs then it takes quite a while with the tap running and the gas burning for hot water to reach the downstairs taps.

I have now decided to either place a jug of water in the microwave to heat it up or place a saucepan of water on the gas to heat it up, or boil the kettle, and use this last thing at night for when I have a quick wash. Or even if I have a quick wash in the daytime. This works out much cheaper than running the boiler for minuets on end while you are waiting for the hot water to come through.

Please be careful though when walking about your home with a saucepan or jug or even a kettle of hot water. Mind you do not trip up anything, carpet or dog or child. Do be careful and do think about what you are doing and where you are going with your container full of hot water.

If it is easier and less stressful to run the hot tap then that may be a better option for you. I have just given you some ideas here and some tips on how to save money and use your gas and electricity more efficiently and effectively.




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