Energy Saving Tips
As well as making energy efficiency changes, like installing insulation, there are simple ways to cut energy waste, lower bills and keep warm this winter. Some of these suggestions might seem obvious, but if everyone does it, it will make a huge difference. The risk is that without advice, more people will do things that could damage their health or comfort levels, without saving significant amounts of energy. Poor energy advice provision also means the government could spend more on the energy price guarantee, at a time when there is scrutiny of public borrowing, and we could burn more gas than we need to, at a time when there could be shortages due to Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
Reduce your boiler flow temperatures
- Turning down the flow temperature on your combi boiler to 60°c or below can knock £112 off your heating bill each year and reduce energy waste from your home. This will cut bills without sacrificing warmth.
- If 10 million households turned down the flow temperature on their combi boilers to 60°c or below this could wipe £1billion off UK energy bills and save 1.7 million tonnes of carbon emissions – the equivalent of nearly six million transatlantic flights.
Tweak your thermostat
- Most households have their thermostat set at between 18°c and 22°c - the recommended temperature is 18°c. Turning your thermostat down by one degree can save 10% on your energy bill and could save up to £128 per year on your energy bill.
Switch to low-energy light bulbs, like LEDs.
- If you replace all the bulbs in your home with LED lights, you could reduce your carbon dioxide emissions by up to 40kg a year. This is equivalent to the carbon dioxide emitted by driving your car around 145 miles.
- Lighting makes up 11% of the average UK household electricity consumption, so making the switch could help you save money too. Switching from 100 watt incandescent bulbs to LEDs could save £15 per bulb per year.
Bleed your radiators
- Trapped air can make your radiators less efficient, so they'll be slower to heat up, meaning the radiators may need to be on for longer and use more energy. Residents can do this easily themselves, if they feel confident, by using guides such as the one above.
Switch to a smart heating system
- Installing a timer on your boiler or switching to a smart heating system could help save energy by turning on the boiler only when necessary. They could also allow more flexibility to fit in with day-to-day weather changes.
- Turning off the heating while you’re out of the house can also help save energy.
- Based on a typical three-bed semi-detached house, there is a potential saving of £75 a year by installing a thermostat, timed programmer and thermostatic radiator valves. Not only that, but it could reduce your home's carbon output by 320kg every year.
- To draught-proof your home, you should block up unwanted gaps that let cold air in and warm air out. Saving warm air means you’ll use less energy to heat your home, so you’ll save money as well as making your home snug and warm.
- Draught-proofing is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to save energy – and money – in any type of building. Draught-proofing around windows and doors could save you around £60 a year. If you have an open chimney, draught-proofing your chimney when you’re not using it could save around £90 a year.
To help alleviate fears, experts at Octopus have provided a series of eight top tips for homeowners that they say could save people an estimated £488 a year.
The energy firm says its tips helped customers save more than £5million on their bills last winter. Here, we take a look at what it says you could do to cut your bills:
CHANGE BOILER FLOW TEMPERATURE
Octopus advises that the default boiler flow level which sets the temperature of water when it leaves the unit is normally too high, and can be reduced.
Experts say you should turn down a combi boiler to 50C for heating and 55C for hot water, which could save £70 per year.
For a boiler and a hot water cylinder, the boiler flow temperature should be just over 60C for heating and hot water, and 60C for the hot water cylinder.
DON'T USE YOUR TUMBLE DRIER
The Energy Savings Trust advises that air drying your clothes on a washing line or clothes horse could save you £60 a year instead of using a tumble drier.
PLUG DRAUGHTS AROUND DOORS
You could save £45 a year by avoiding wasting energy by plugging gaps around doors and windows that could cause drafts, Octopus says. You can find draughts using the back of your hand, or with a thermal camera.
CHECK YOUR THERMOSTAT
Using your thermostat as an on/off switch or boost for energy can cause more gas to be wasted.
Octopus advises that you should set it and leave it on when it's required - leaving it between 18C and 21C. It says turning down the temperature by 1C could save you £128 a year.
CUT YOUR SHOWER TIME
A typical household could save £70 a year by reducing the time spent in the shower to four minutes.
CHANGE TO LED LIGHTBULBS
Changing to LED lightbulbs when its time to replace bulbs can saved between £5 to £13 per bulb per year, according to the Energy Savings Trust. Experts say another £20 per year can be saved by ensuring you switch off the lights when you leave the room.
INSULATE YOUR HOT WATER TANK
Experts say an 80mm-thick jacket for your hot water cylinder could save £35 a year. A foam tube can also be used to insulate exposed hot water pipes.
PULL YOUR CURTAINS EARLY
Pulling your curtains before it gets dark can also help your home retain more heat with less energy.
TOTAL POTENTIAL ENERGY BILL SAVINGS: £488
There are of course many other useful ideas at moneysavingexpert.com
There are many ways we can save energy by having the right appliance and using them in the right way, often remembering to turn them off is a good start!