A Guide to a More Energy Efficient Winter
How to be More Energy Efficient in Winter
The average UK home spends almost £1,254 a year on energy bills, Ofgem stats reveal. As a result of this, improving energy efficiency in our homes has never been more important.
As the world becomes increasingly conscious about the environment, now is the perfect time to learn more about how reducing our energy efficiency can help limit the amount of CO2 emissions we emit. By following a few easy pieces of advice, you can save a significant amount on your bills, especially in the winter.
How to deal with draughts
One major contributor to energy wastage is the likes of draughty windows, floors, and doors. Although small cracks and gaps may not seem significant, they can be responsible for a huge amount of heat loss, as well as allowing cold air to creep into your home. The ultimate result of this is an unnecessary increase in your bills.
However, simply installing draught excluders on things like windows, doors, even cat flaps and key holes, can help see you save a great deal on your heating bills.
To add, installing double-glazing on your windows is another effective way to save on your bills due to the strong insulative barrier they form, helping keep heat in your home. Although insulation may not come at a cheap cost, in the long run, they can help you save a significant amount on your bills. Even some fewer extreme developments such as adding sealants, insulating strips and even rolled up newspaper to seal any gaps, can help limit the amount of heat that escapes.
The smart way to heat your home
Thanks to improvements in modern technology, we can easily get to grips with our energy usage and find out what we need to know to reduce this usage. The likes of smart thermostats allow us to take control of our energy usage. Not only that, but they have the ability to pick up on our home heating habits and be selective about which rooms we want to supply heating too.
Excelling in technological innovations are the likes of handy apps with smart technology that has been designed to be even more convenient and ensures the temperature remains consistent in our home throughout the day.
Appliances worth investing in
Thinking long term about appliances that will result in higher efficiency ratings is something to take on board when looking to invest in new household appliances, and could result in a few extra pounds in your pocket. Although the initial costs may be more than expected, the long-term benefits should result in lower bills, making it all worthwhile. Products that score an A+ and above are ones to look out for.
Knowing when to pull the plug
Although old habits may be causing you to put electrical appliances on standby mode when not in use, it’s far more energy efficient to switch them off completely. Some of the biggest wastes of energy are TVs, mobile phones, and laptops that are left on standby mode, since even when not in use, they are still using power.
You could save up to £80 a year by simply switching off appliances properly , rather than leaving them on standby, according to The Energy Savings Trust.
Insulate your home
Providing the right insulation is used, you could also be spending that saved up bill money on a trip to the cinema or even a meal out. If adequate insulation is not put in your home, it’s thought that a quarter of heat could be lost through the roof. As part of the Government’s Energy Consumption Obligation, insulation grants can be offered, making this instalment easier than expected.
There are also some additional inexpensive ‘quick fixes’, including adding foam tubes to cover your pipes that keep the water warm for longer. Plus, helping to retain heat are what’s called ‘lagging jackets’, which are fitted over your boiler and priced at around £10 — these are a cost-effective way to prevent using too much energy to keep your water warm.
By insulating your house efficiently, you can aid the environment by conserving non-renewable fuel supplies. Fibreglass and rock wool products can save more than 100 times the amount of energy used to produce them through a 20-year period.
The perks of cold washing
Other small adjustments can help too. Did you know you could save up to a third on washing costs by reducing the temperature to 30 degrees on your machine. Although the occasional ‘hot’ wash is advised, by lowering the temperature on your washing machine you could save £52 per year on bills.
Energy cost comparisons
Although it may be time consuming to do, seeing the different prices that energy providers charge will be worth your while. The idea that the Big Six energy suppliers are the only ones offering competitive deals isn’t always true — some smaller suppliers could help reduce your bills even more than expected. Regardless of which you choose, 62% of bill payers didn’t switch providers last year, meaning they missed out on what could have been a reduced energy bill.
Fuel efficiency in off-grid areas
The importance of keeping bills low for those that live in rural areas off the mains gas grid is essential. The oil v gas debate still stands, however switching to a greener alternative such as LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) could be beneficial. As the lowest carbon footprint of all off-grid fossil fuels, LPG is not only cost-effective, but also is cleaner than other fossil fuels.
With this said, what better time to look at reducing your energy usage now that we’re spending an increasing amount of time indoors? By adopting just a few of these energy saving techniques could help see you save on your bills.
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