Energy efficiency in the home has never been more important after Ofcom revealed the average UK home spends almost £1,254 a year on energy bills.
Learning about energy efficiency has multiple benefits, including helping to reduce CO2 emissions and lower our environmental impact we have on the planet. For those keen to drive down the price of their energy bills and cut carbon during the colder months, adopting a few easy-to-follow steps could result in significant savings. Here with LPG suppliers, Flogas, their team offer some practical advice on how to become more energy efficient this winter.
How to deal with draughts
One major contributor to energy wastage are draughty windows, doors and floors in the home. Although they might seem small, gaps and cracks have the potential to let out a large amount of heat, while allowing cold air in — impacting on your bills unnecessarily.
One way to tackle this is by installing draught excluders on your doors and windows. Even keyholes and cat flaps can make a big difference, so try to keep them covered where you can. Alternatively, sealants, insulating strips and even rolled up newspaper can go a long way to ensuring heat stays in your home.
Finally, double-glazing is extremely effective at keeping your home well insulated. Whilst installation can be costly, it’s a definite way to save on heating bills.
The smart way to heat your home
As we all look to slash our energy bills, improvements in technology are now helping us get to grips with our energy usage. Devices such as smart thermostats can go a long way to reducing heating bills by allowing greater control.
As well as giving you the option to heat specific rooms, smart thermostats have the capabilities to learn your home heating habits – allowing you to consistently maintain the right temperature at the right time of day.
Latest innovations, such as handy apps, have been designed to make smart technology even more convenient. If used correctly, it’s estimated that they could save households around £150 a year.
Efficient appliances to invest in
In the long-term, it is better to invest in high-efficiency appliances when they need replacing. Whilst it may cost more initially, the long-term payoff will help reduce your bills. Look out for products that score an A+ and above. An A+++ fridge for example, could save you around £190 over ten tears when compared to an A+ model.
It’s time to pull the plug
In terms of energy efficiency, it is far more beneficial to turn appliances off completely, rather than just putting them on stand-by. TVs, laptops and mobile phone chargers are still switched on even when they’re on standby, which means they’re using energy unnecessarily. According to the Energy Saving Trust, you could save around £30 a year just by switching off appliances properly, whilst households with more gadgets could save between £50 and £80.
You could be making a significant amount of savings with the right insulation in place. In fact, it’s estimated that a quarter of all heat from your home could be lost through your roof if proper insulation isn’t in place. Insulation grants are offered as part of the Government’s Energy Company Obligation Scheme, so insulating your home could be easier than you think.
Alternatively, smaller ‘quick fixes’ can also help – foam tubes that cover your pipes can keep your water warmer for longer and cost just a few pounds. You can also use a ‘lagging jacket’ which fits over your boiler and helps retain heat. At around £10, they’re a cost-effective way to prevent you from using extra energy to reheat water.
Cold wash your clothes
One easy way to save money is to wash your clothes at a lower temperature. Simply turning the temperature down from 40 to 30 degrees can be up to a third cheaper. Over the space of the year it could add up to a saving of £52.
An occasional ‘hot’ wash is still a good idea though as it helps to ensure the washing machine is kept clean.
Make a comparison between energy costs
Changing energy providers could save you a significant amount of money on bills per year, especially since utility bills take up a huge sum of household expenditures. Remember, it’s not just the Big Six that offer competitive deals, switching to a smaller energy supplier, such as Romeo’s Fuel (https://www.romeosfuel.com/) for your home heating oil, could also mean a reduction in bills. It’s estimated that 62% of bill payers didn’t switch last year, so don’t miss out on a cheaper tariff.
Fuel efficiency in off-grid areas
Choosing an energy efficient fuel for generators is vital for those who live in off-grid areas. This can be done by switching from more traditional off-grid fuels like oil to a cleaner, greener alternative, such as LPG (liquefied petroleum gas). With the lowest carbon footprint of any off-grid fossil fuel, LPG is better for the environment and it’s cost-effective. Its abundance of supply also makes it reliable, so you never need to worry about running out.