The clocks have gone back, winter cold is on its way and home energy bills are set to go through the roof. The good news is there is plenty you can do to turn down the heat on your utility bills.
Turn down the heat
Some relatively small changes could save you large sums in the longer run, just make sure you don't end up shivering as a result.
Turning your thermostat down by just 1°C can save up to £95 a year, according to the Energy Saving Trust, and you probably won't even notice the difference. Installing a room thermostat (if you don't have one) will save around £70 a year, as you can control your home’s temperature more effectively. You can also consider NEHS and upgrade to energy-efficient, eco-friendly heating solutions for a more sustainable and cost-effective home heating experience.
DIY draught-proofing of windows, doors and blocking cracks in floors and skirting boards can cost around £200, but quickly starts to pay off with savings of up to £25 to £35 a year on energy bills.
If you are really keen to save money, consider putting sheets of tin foil behind your radiators to reflect heat back into the room, and draw your curtains when it gets dark to stop the heat from escaping. If your loft has no insulation, getting this done can save you up to £180 a year.
Read more: 8 ways to cut your energy bills
Energy-saving tips are not just for winter, you can cut your electricity bills throughout the year through small behavioural changes such as avoiding overfilling your kettle, shunning your energy-hungry tumble dryer in the summer, or setting your washing machine to 30°.
We have more gadgets than ever and turning appliances off rather than leaving them on standby could save the average household £30 a year, the Energy Saving Trust says. However, satellite and digital TV recorders should be left plugged-in for recording programmes
It would cost about £100 for the average household to replace all of their remaining old-fashioned light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps, or CFLs, but save about £35 a year on bills (they also last around 10 times longer).
A family of four will save around £75 a year by installing an eco-showerhead and probably won't notice the difference.
Read more: 12 top energy saving ideas
The biggest quick fix is to shop around for a cheaper utility supplier. Those who have never switched before could save as much as £250 a year, as they are most likely to be sitting on older, overpriced tariffs.
It takes just a few minutes to log onto a price comparison site and enter your details—which can be found on your last gas and electricity bills—compare rates and make the switch.
Your energy supply will continue uninterrupted, the only difference you will notice is your new provider’s logo at the top of your next bill, which should also be a lot lower. With a little energy on your part, you might be surprised to see how much money you can save.
Read more: Beat the energy chills this winter
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