With fuel prices on the rise and the majority of us spending more time at home, reducing the amount of energy we use at home and reducing our bills is at the forefront of our minds and learning how to use your home energy more efficiently is a great way to reduce CO2 emissions. With Ofgem predicting that prices could go from £1,277 per year today for an average household, to £1,995 – a rise of 56%, we look at some simple changes on how to become more energy efficient this winter.
About a third of all the heat lost in an uninsulated home escapes through the walls but by properly insulating cavity walls, you will save energy and cut costs off your heating bill. Insulating your ground floor is a great way to keep your property warm also and you should consider insulating any floors that are above unheated spaces such as garages, as you could be losing a lot of heat through those. Roof and loft insulation is another option worth considering as we can lose a quarter of heat through the roof in an uninsulated home. Installed correctly, loft insulation should pay for itself many times over in its 40-year lifetime.
Upgrade your heating controls
Old boilers can cost more to run than new ones – but given that buying a new boiler and having it installed can cost up to £4,000, replacing it is not always cost effective. If you decide that replacing your boiler would be too expensive but your heating controls are old, just replace those – newer heating controls are much more accurate. Installing a smart thermostat could also help save you hundreds of pounds a year as these work by only heating the rooms you are using and are controlled through your phone, so you can heat your home more efficiently and save money in the long run.
Upgrade your appliances
Throwing out a perfectly good appliance won’t save you much money, but when it is time to swap, going for one with a high energy-efficiency rating can be worth the investment.
- An A+++ washing will typically use £65 less energy than an A+ one over an 11-year product lifespan.
- A modern, efficient dishwasher will typically cost around £7 less a year to run compared to an older model.
- An A+++ fridge freezer will save around £320 in energy bills over its lifetime compared to an A+ model.
Swapping your light bulbs
Simple but very effective, LED light bulbs are now one of the most cost-effective, reliable and energy efficient types of bulb available. In fact, they use around 70-80% less electricity than the equivalent traditional bulbs. And it’s not just money you’ll be saving. For every traditional halogen light bulb you replace with a similar LED version, you save around 5kg of CO2 emissions. That adds up to around 63kgs of CO2 saved when the average home makes the change to LED.
Lower your thermostat
Adopt the habit of lowering the temperature on your thermostat while away from home. Dropping the temp by just three to five degrees will reduce your monthly utility bill and use less energy. According to Energy.gov, lowering your thermostat by 10 to 15 degrees during the work day will save 5% to 15% every year.