As the cooler days of winter start to gather, families across the UK will be bracing themselves for the largest energy bills of the year. Following the recent newspaper articles and TV documentaries about the rapidly changing global climate and the finite supplies of coal and gas, now is the time to become energy savvy. Act today to cut your energy needs and do your part to help in the reduction of global energy consumption and your reward will be a noticeable cut in your fuel bills and a rise in your bank balance…
Whilst some of the suggestions for saving energy such as double glazing or installing a new boiler are costly, most of them are comparatively cheap and take very little time to put into action – make 2018 an energy efficient winter in your family…
A Light Bulb Moment
- Have you changed all your light bulbs to energy efficient ones? Replace a 60 watt bulb with a 12 watt LED and this will use 35 – 75% less energy. True, when you buy the LED bulbs they are more expensive but remind yourself how often you had to replace your traditional light bulbs – LEDs last up to 25 times longer.
- Encourage all family members to turn lights off as soon as they leave a room.
- Invest in some smart lights as you can control them when you are out and adjust their brightness- and they automatically turn off when you leave the room.
Turn on the Heat!
- Whilst it is lovely to have a warm centrally heated home, did you know that if you lower the thermostat by 1°C, it will be hardly noticeable but will reduce your energy bill.
- If you invest in a programmable smart thermostat you can save up to £150 a year because you can heat the rooms you want , how you want and when you want.
- Have you checked that you are not heating the rooms you don’t use?
Think Thrifty with Hot Water.
- It is essential to have hot water but at what price? Check the jacket on your water tank to ensure that it has an adequate layer of insulation as this keeps water hotter for longer.
- Whilst a long soak in the bath can be lovely and therapeutic, make it a treat rather than a routine as showers use much less water.
- Instead of running the tap for ages to get some hot water, think thrifty and boil a kettle!
Check your Appliances.
- How energy efficient are all your electrical appliances? If you are buying new, check that the label gives your chosen appliance an A+. True these aren’t the cheapest models, but the extra outlay is worth it for the energy you will save in the long run.
- Turn appliances off rather than leave them in standby mode. An unbelievable 50% of energy is consumed in the average household by appliances not actually being used! It is best to turn any appliances – including TVs and PCs off at the wall when they are not being used.
- Have a read of your washing machine instruction booklet to ensure you are using the most economical wash programmes. Most washing detergents are designed to work at lower temperatures, so it is well worth double checking you are using the most effective washing detergents for your chosen programmes.
Bonus Energy Saving Tricks
Whilst these are all the main points to check as they use the lion’s share of your energy consumption, there are lots of small adjustments that can be made that can all help make your home more energy efficient.
We talked to quick house sale specialists www.housebuyers4u.co.uk and they mentioned the following which include:-
- Check that there are no draughts under the doors or at the windows. If there are,insulating tape can be bought in your local DIY and is cheap and easy to use.
- How thick are your curtains? Sounds a daft but logical question as thick heavy curtains provide much more insulation and help keep the warmth in a room.
- Have you bare floor boards in your home? Trendy yes, but energy efficient no! Bare floorboards do not insulate a room like a carpet does so why not go continental and do as the Greeks and Spanish do? They have large rugs and carpets that they lay on the floor as the temperature drops to help keep rooms snug.
And the Bigger Energy Consumption Busters!
There are several ways to dramatically increase the energy efficiency of your property. True, these are more costly to install, but if you are planning on staying rooted for five-ten years they are worth the investment as you will financially reap the benefits and they will be good selling points for when you do decide to make the move…
- Double glaze your windows. This definitely reduces the waste of any heating energy with the bonus of reducing noise levels from passing traffic etc.
- Insulate your roof well. Did you know that as heat rises, much heat is lost through a poorly insulated roof? Adding extra insulating material can make a real difference and is an easy to achieve DIY project.
- Are the walls well insulated too? This question can be answered by professionals who will be able to advise you if it would be beneficial to have additional insulating material.
With so many stark warning about the earth’s future if we all continue consuming energy at current rates, it is essential that each and every one of us does take a few minutes to think how we can make our home truly energy efficient. In reality, there is no need to have every light in the house switched on and everyone walking around in tee shirts all year through…as past generations have done, switch all unnecessary lights off and don a jumper and slippers!