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House mates excessive electricity usage

  • 06-08-2022 3:36pm
    Registered Users Posts: 1,653 ✭✭✭Patsy167

    Looking for advice on how to approach this situation -

    House sharing with 3 others (aged 20s-30s) and one of of the housemates is very careless with electricity usage. He'll do 4-5 runs of the washing machine and Tumble dryer every week, often running the tumble dryer for multiple times to dry heavy towels.

    It's been getting on my nerves recently with the the whole focus on the energy crisis and the cost he's adding to the bills. We have two clothes horses/air dryers and all others will use these during the summer and only use the dryer in winter when its needed. Even when there's a heat wave outside that would dry the clothes in an hour he'll never uses the air dryers out of pure laziness.

    He's generally lazy in every way, leaves the freezer wide open overnight, heating on in the living room overnight, and has the heating on constantly wearing t-shirt and shorts year round even in winter.

    Is there a way we could bring this up with him without causing offence or discriminating against him or is this just the joys of house sharing that has to be tolerated?



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,488 ✭✭✭endofrainbow

    Timer for the heating and a rota for the washer/dryer?

  • Registered Users Posts: 304 ✭✭DFB-D

    I wouldn't worry about him getting offended.

    Just make sure everyone is on the same wavelength and speak to him. If he chooses to get offended by this, it would be childish behavior...

  • Registered Users Posts: 86 ✭✭bitent

    This is where the apparent saving money by sharing idea starts to break down.

    You can't account for things like this when you get that bargain room for 450 a month. There is always at least one person like this.

    I shared with a girl who ran towels for hours in the dryer to the point that they were burning hot about to set on fire.

    The oven would be put on to "heat up" for 2 hours with nothing in it. When it did eventually get used, four little croquettes would go in. Beyond wasteful. And then there was the emersion!.

    Definitely speak to him about this asap. Be diplomatic but don't put on the kid gloves. People like this often react in spite and tend to behave even worse when called out but with luck you are sharing with someone who just didn't realize what they were doing

    I hope you can get through to him.

  • Registered Users Posts: 990 ✭✭✭Murph85

    The household is literally paying likely a few extra grand a year for this. Its ridiculously wasteful and unfair...

  • Registered Users Posts: 948 ✭✭✭airy fairy

    Just call a housemates meeting to discuss increasing costs and how you all could reduce them. Introduce the dryer, washing machine usage along the way. How that maybe everyone does one wash and one dry per week to spread the cost fairly? If he gets the hump, then suggest that meter readings are taken during machine usage and that he may have to contribute more to the pot if he continues to use the machines excessively. Everyone should be using appliances fairly/evenly these days.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,290 ✭✭✭CPTM

    You could get one of those plug in devices which measure the amount of electricity used by an appliance to see how much it actually costs to wash and dry a big load like that. Just to have a figure in mind when chatting to them to help hammer the point home.

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,843 ✭✭✭Caranica

    One wash per week? I usually do lights, darks and towels/bedding and that's just for one person. I got rid of the dryer though, no need for one. It sounds like there's no need for one in the OP's house either. Consider plugging it out for one billing cycle and seeing the difference that makes.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,270 ✭✭✭893bet

    Suck it up. Part of house sharing. Swings and roundabouts.

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,843 ✭✭✭Caranica

    Work clothes, exercise/ hobby clothes, weekend clothes, underwear, sleepwear, sheets, duvet cover, pillow cases, towels, tea towels, bathroom mats? My bedding is king size so the duvet cover gets heavy when wet. Now it wouldn't be 3 loads every week but it would be 10 a month probably.

    At the moment stuff is air-drying in 2-3 hours and even in winter most stuff will dry overnight when the heating is on. OP suggest your housemate uses the large dryers at petrol stations and supermarkets if they really need something dried.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 556 ✭✭✭LilacNails

    Have the same problem op.

    Share with 3, 1 puts on a wash once and week and hardly ever around. The other 2 are constantly washing , and re washing when they have left already washed clothes byild up in a heap, and washing clothes again after leaving them for days outside in the rain. Dread the esb every time.

    Im kinda caught tho because those 2 are good friends and the other one is never really around and would be one to pay for the sake of peace. Its so infuriating!

    Have thought about saying something but from my experience so far with them, cant see any agreement or understanding been met.

    What do u roughly pay per month for it ?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,146 ✭✭✭bikeman1

    That reminded me. I had an oven licencee at one stage. Full blast oven on for ages with nothing in it.

    I told her to stop doing that as it was a safety hazard and a huge waste. I had to turn it off and tell her, let me know when you are ready to cook and I’ll have it at the right temperature for you in good time!!

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,597 ✭✭✭✭Leg End Reject


    I do about 5 loads a week. Bedding, towels and then a mix of light and dark washes for clothes. I change out of work clothes into around the house slob clothes when I get home. Now, the slob clothes would last 2 days. Then pjs, underwear, going out clothes etc.

    I only use the dryer in winter for bed clothes and towels, everything is lined dried if it's not raining, or put on a clothes airer.

  • Registered Users Posts: 652 ✭✭✭eusap

    Take the fuse out of the dryer plug and tell him its broken

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,980 ✭✭✭Claw Hammer

    Take thye fuse out of the plug in the tumble dryer and see how well he can manage without it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,596 ✭✭✭dennyk

    I live alone and three loads a week is the bare minimum I can get away with. My washer is so small that it can only handle a few items at a time; if I try to cram more than four or five shirts in there at a time, or more than two pairs of jeans at once, they just won't be washed and will come out all soapy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,620 ✭✭✭DoctorEdgeWild

    5 loads of washing a week?! Is it an army barracks? 😂 Can see why the rising costs of power is hurting so many people out there.

    OP - Definitely time for a meeting of the housemates, rather than doing things like removing plugs, doing things by force, have a discussion - Say that bills are too high, we need to find a way to bring them down - Here are the options - Then discuss.

    Stuff like leaving the freezer open all night is over the line though. Stuff like washing, as evidenced above, can be different norms for people - but nobody should be doing something that stupid! Good luck with it OP!!

  • Registered Users Posts: 15,641 ✭✭✭✭Spanish Eyes

    There's far too much washing being done. Our mothers/grannies washed on a Monday and that was it.

    Wear once then wash is fine for underwear, socks, shirts, but for most other things it is not necessary to wash after one wear. Every two weeks or so for bedding is fine. Surely if you shower every day you are clean getting into the scratcher?

    If people had to wash by hand with a rubbing board and and mangle (like my mother did until the first washing machine arrived), you wouldn't be washing a pair of socks or a tea towel every day.

    Ochon agus ochon agus an ice cream cone Peig Sayers is back!

  • Moderators, Education Moderators, Music Moderators Posts: 10,686 Mod ✭✭✭✭melekalikimaka

    how much do you think a standard tumbledryer costs to run for a hour

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,141 ✭✭✭meijin

    A++ rated, about 50c each time... 😆

    seriously, wait for sunny weather to make your laundry and bring it outside to save 50c?

  • Registered Users Posts: 497 ✭✭PalLimerick

    From reading the comments here, half of the people house sharing think they own the house lol. Most of the demands mentioned here by sharers I'd tell them pıss off and that would be me being nice about it. FTR, I don't house share.

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,597 ✭✭✭✭Leg End Reject

    I'm amused at all the laundry police.

    It's impossible to account for individual electricity usage in a house share. Apart from laundry there's cooking, heating water with a boiler, electric showers/immersions and all the electrical items that each will have in their own rooms.

    While there's no need to have an oven on for hours before it's actually used, or to use the clothes dryer for every wash it's going to be tough to get everyone to agree to new house rules, nevermind actually follow them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 52,918 ✭✭✭✭walshb

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,696 ✭✭✭gameoverdude

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,653 ✭✭✭Patsy167

    OP here, thanks to all for the great advice. I got everyone together yesterday evening and explained the concerns. We were all in agreement that there is a need to be more mindful of the electric usage so it looks like we have a plan.

    Post edited by Patsy167 on

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,297 ✭✭✭walterking

    Work out the average cost per wash / tumble dry.

    Have a sheet with the names on it.

    Get them to sign each time they use machines.

    This will show them the costs involved.

    The other thing is to do express washes - most machines will have a 45 min option (some have 30 min). These are pefect for all but the most soiled of items. Towels and sheets in particular suit the 30 min wash.

    Use clothes horse for drying items outside and then finishing them off in the dryer.

    You'd be surprised at the amount of savings you can make.

    I think the benefit of the high electricity charges is people becoming more careful and using less.

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,597 ✭✭✭✭Leg End Reject

    A 30 min wash for towels and bedclothes?

    Welcome to bacteria-ridden towels and snuggling at night with the faeces of dust mites.

    Most appealing ...

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 8,386 CMod ✭✭✭✭Sierra Oscar

    I can't imagine the average rental having a new A+ heat pump tumble dryer just yet. The vast majority are probably the more energy inefficient condenser dryers. Your own link highlights it's over €1 a load. It all adds up. In fact, I'd imagine a lot of rentals have washer-dryers which are even more expensive.

    Whatever about the washing machine, tumble dryers use a lot of electricity comparatively speaking. Washer dryers are enen worse and the drying cycle takes longer than a condenser / heat pump machine.

    It's unlikely to break the bank in the grander scheme of things, but it does seem a bit silly to use a dryer in fine weather and whatnot. Laziness perhaps?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,538 ✭✭✭MrMusician18

    A modern washing machine (say Beko C rated machine) uses about 0.7kwh of electricity for the standard eco cycle, so about 20c if you are on a discount power plan. So about €6 more than if you consider his washing machine use double normal. A condenser dryer uses 1.5 kWh per cycle typically or about 45c. About €13 in excess over normal. Those combo washer dryers are much more inefficient however if that's the type you have

    Someone running a wash no dry every day uses slightly less power than someone using a standard 9kw power shower for 5mins. Putting the oven on for an hour is 2kwh or 60c.

    I would be very reluctant to call someone out for excessive use of an appliance unless I was sure my own nose was clean. The most I'd do here in this situation is that you should agree that washing should be line dried while the weather permits and for everyone to bo more mindful of their energy use.