Household Electrical Appliances
Home improvement and household appliances news and updates

Installing an outdoor socket

If you are using electrical items outside then ideally you need to have an outdoor socket. You do not want to be using extension leads if at all possible and sometimes these will not work anyway and can cause the power to trip out.

You should always use a qualified electrician to install an outdoor socket and someone who has experience in this. The sockets themselves can range from £7 or ££8 up toward £50 depending on which one you want.

You may find it cheaper to buy this yourself or ask the electrician how much he would charge for the part.

If you are using a heater in a hot tub for example, then it will need to go into the socket outside as using extension leads can often be a fire hazard. If you do ever use an extension lead for the lawn mower for example, then you need to ensure that it is completely unravelled each time you use it and inspect it for damage.

When you are not using the outside socket be sure to leave the cover closed so no water can get in there. Ideally always use the socket, to start, with when you are in the property to check that it is all working as it should. The unit or the socket needs to be RCD protected to ensure that it will trip out and not give an electric shock should there be a fault.


Posted in Appliances by Linda. Comments Off on Installing an outdoor socket

Online shopping in the UK

Online shopping has grown and grown over the last decade and some people now do the majority of their shopping online, often from the comfort of their own home without even having to leave the house. The average online shopper spends £40 each month on clothes and 55% of female shoppers buy clothes online. This year (2018) has seen an increase in online shopping from 74% to 80%! With this trend, it is no wonder that many of the high street stores are starting to struggle.

So will there always be a need for the high street store? This is a question many people are starting to wonder. High street stores, at present, are needed as there are still some people that would prefer to go and look at something or try it on before they buy. Also with most stores offering delivery between 1-7 days, if you need something urgently then you may need to go to a store to get it rather than wait to have it delivered. Companies like Amazon are already trailing drones that could deliver items to people the same day, maybe within a few hours. If and when this happens, it may mean even more people turn to online shopping that hitting the high street.

Posted in Shopping Habits by Linda. Comments Off on Online shopping in the UK

Saving money on your gas and electricity bills

Gas and Electric bills are often one of the largest outgoings a family has on a monthly basis after the mortgage or rent. We all need some way of heating our homes and running our electrical appliances but often we forget that even just by switching off a few things we can save a fortune on our fuel bills.

Many people leave their televisions and set-top boxes on standby overnight, often not giving it a second thought. But did you know you can save over £80 per year on average by switching appliances off rather than on to standby mode?

Smart meters are rolling out across the country and can help you realise how and where you are spending. It may be that you boil your kettle then forget to make a drink so boil it again a few minutes later. Doing this repeatedly over the year can rack up unnecessary electricity charges.

Another way to save money is by checking if you should change suppliers or at least the tariff you are on. Some people save in excess of £400 a year just by switching to a new supplier.


Posted in Energy Efficiency by Linda. Comments Off on Saving money on your gas and electricity bills

What are smart meters and should you have one installed?

Many people are being contacted by their gas or electricity supplier asking them if they would like to have a smart meter fitted. This is a relatively new device that can help cut down on costs. Smart meters are devices that are installed in your home which will automatically submit your meter readings to your utility provider. This means that billing will be more accurate and fewer home visits to do meter readings. The device will also come with a display screen on which you can place anywhere in your home which will show you your current usage. This is a great way to allow you to become more energy efficient and save money on your gas and electricity bills. You may be surprised how much you can save just by going around and turning the light off or pegging your washing out on the line, rather than using the tumble drier.

There is no cost to have a smart meter installed and you will stay on the same tariff you are currently on. The money for smart meters is being funded through everyone’s electricity bills in with their usual costs so you may as well get one installed as you will be contributing towards it somehow.


Posted in Energy Efficiency by Linda. Comments Off on What are smart meters and should you have one installed?

Disposing of batteries

There is often a bit of confusion when it comes to disposing of batteries. Some people think it is fine to chuck all batteries in the normal waste whereas other people think that they need to be disposed of as hazardous waste properly at designated places. There are different rules for different types of batteries and that is because of the material that is inside them. Most alkaline batteries do not contain mercury and are composed primarily of common metals such as steel, zinc, and manganese. This means they do not pose a health or environmental risk during normal use or disposal, so, therefore, can be chucked in with your normal household waste.

Car batteries cannot be disposed of in normal waste (this is by law) and will either need to be taken to a garage or a waste site that accepts them. If you are having a battery replaced then ask the garage if they will dispose of your old one. They may charge you a small fee to do this.

You may want to send your batteries to be recycled instead. Often your local council will collect batteries that are left out with the normal recycling collection, but always call and check first.

Posted in Disposal by Linda. Comments Off on Disposing of batteries