Cost of living seems to be soaring, whilst wages have remained low for some years now. Home owners are having to find ways of saving money wherever they can – but how do you save money on your energy bills?
The need to cut energy bills dramatically is particularly relevant now as over the summer months it was revealed that British Gas would be raising their energy prices. It is estimated that the UK could save £7.5bn on energy bills if improvements were made. The UK Government are behind this, recognising rising energy costs as a problem, but one that has some simple solutions.
#1 Adopt Better Habits:
Perhaps the simplest and easiest way to save money on your energy bills is to adopt better habits, such as turning a lightoff when leaving a room; closing the curtains to keep the heat in, or opening them to allow sunlight in; checking appliances are switched off and not left on standby; putting a wash on overnight (when your property can make use of Economy 7 energy plans); reaching for a jumper and blanket before putting the heating on; washing clothes at 30 degrees, and many more. Once these become habits, you should notice your energy bills decreasing.
#2 Buy energy efficient appliances:
Appliances are now given an energy efficiency rating from A to G, with A being the best. Check when buying new appliances that you are choosing the most energy efficient product (even if it is out of your original budget, think of the money you will save in the long run on the energy it uses to operate). Remember, you will need to use the appliance according to instructions to ensure you are using it at its most energy efficient.
#3 Capitalise on natural light and heat sources:
You probably already have lots of natural light from windows and doors in your home, so capitalise on this by arranging the room so that it maximises the use of the natural light e.g. put your home-office desk in front of a window to light your working environment. You can also make better use of the heat caused by sunlight, by ensuring curtains and blinds are open during the day, but closed in the evening – reducing heat loss by 13-17%.
Consider installing skylights to maximise natural light and heat in your property.Natural light and heat can be significantly increased through skylight windows as they help with ‘daylighting’ your property, and careful placement of skylights allows you to use them as heat and light energy sources (reducing the needs for artificial sources which can be costly).
#4 Improve home insulation:
Installing proper insulation again can shed hundreds off your energy bills. It works by trapping and reflecting the heat in your home, so that it can’t escape as easily through the open spaces in your home such as the roof/loft space or through cavity walls. Consider also insulating behind radiators and under floor boards to reduce heat loss – saving you up to £40 a year.
#5 Switch supplier:
Shop around for your energy supplier! Get to grips with understanding the tariffs and then be selective about which one would work best for you and your home. There are also companies that can help you make the switch, just search online.
#6 Smart Meters/Apps:
Energy suppliers and independent companies are promoting the use of new smart meters or monitors, allowing you to easily track your energy consumption. By being able to see your energy consumption. The idea is then to encourage you to change your energy usage habits, as the meter can show you a visual representation of how you have saved energy – and therefore money. It is really satisfying to instantly see the difference you are making – and money that you are saving of course.
#7 Use Energy Control Apps:
Energy control apps such as Hive and Nest, allow you to control your energy usage remotely. So how do these apps help to slash your energy bills? If you normally set the heating to come on around 5pm before you arrive home, but decide to meet a few friends after work instead, you can change the time your heating comes on with a few clicks of a button on your phone, reducing any wasted energy use. These smart apps will also set up plans based on your typical energy usage throughout a week. You could save up to £300 a year.
#8 Switch to LED Light Bulbs:
By replacing yourordinary bulbs with LED light bulbs, you could save up to £3-£6 a year, per bulb. Count how many bulbs you have in your home now, and you’ll see the total saving you could make with only a small initial cost.
#9 Submit meter readings:
By not providing meter readings, you are likely to be paying as much as £137 a year more than is necessary, as your energy provider uses an estimate to figure out your bill. This estimate is based on the average energy consumption of a similar property in your area. So, if you’re implementing all the above measures to save energy, but not submitting meter readings, then your energy has been wasted (in both senses of the word).
Locate your gas and electricity meter, and ensure you know how to read it accurately, then provide this information to your energy company as soon as possible after receiving your notification to do so.
It is not only your savings account that can benefit from making these changes, but the environmental impact would be tremendous too.