Home Energy Advice
If you do not qualify for the Green Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery Scheme you can still speak to an energy adviser at YES for advice on improving the energy efficiency of your home.
You can find more information on Energy Saving Home Improvements for your Household | YES Energy Solutions or call 01422 880 100 to speak to someone for expert free advice.
You can also find helpful energy efficiency advice at Simple Energy Advice or call free phone number 0800 444 202 to speak to one of their trained energy advisors.
Basic Energy Saving Tips
Simple fixes to your daily habits can have a huge impact on the amount you save on energy every year, even once the pandemic is over. Keep reading to discover some easy changes you can make to save on your next bill.
1. Don’t boil water in a pan
It might seem logical to boil water in the same pan you’re going to use for cooking. And while it might feel like you’re being cost-effective, the opposite is actually true. The average kettle is about 80% efficient, while boiling water on the stovetop is only 70%. Plus, the kettle is also a much quicker way to get your water bubbling.
2. Opt for a shower, not a bath
According to the Energy Saving Trust, if everyone in a family of four swapped one bath a week for a five-minute shower, it could save up to £20 a year on their gas bill. Consider changing your shower head to an eco-version, too. If you do, a family of four can save around £75 a year on gas (and £115 on water if they have a meter).
3. Bleed your radiators
If you’ve got gas central heating with radiators, you’ll need to bleed them every so often to keep them running effectively. If you’ve got air in the system it can stop hot water circulating efficiently. It’s a good idea to do it at least once a year and ideally before you switch on your heating for the winter. Get tips on how to bleed a central heating system.
4. Remember you boiled the kettle
It sounds like a silly one, but how many times have you boiled a kettle, then walked away and forgotten you’ve done it? By the time you remember you’re after a hot drink, the water will have cooled and you may need to boil the kettle all over again. A total waste of energy.
5. Wash everything at 30 degrees C
Today’s washing detergents are very effective at 30 degrees, so try to avoid washing laundry on a higher setting. Wait until you have a full load too – that saves on water as well as energy. Just make sure you aren’t going to have any colours which run or fabrics which get damaged. Use an eco-wash setting if you can, as this will save on your bills in the long term. If someone in your home has contracted coronavirus you may want to wash their towels, bedlinen and so on separately from the rest of your washing, at 60 degrees. You should also avoid shaking these clothes before you put them in the machine.
6. Use a line to dry
This isn’t something you see that often anymore. It goes without saying that using the natural power of the elements will have a big impact on cutting costs. Tumble dryers use up a lot of energy, so try to avoid them as much as you can.
7. Take control of your heating
The Energy Saving Trust suggests that turning down your thermostat by just one degree could save around £55 per year. Why not give it a go and see how much you save?
Also, check whether heat could be leaving your home through gaps. Thick curtains, draught excluders, and even a piece of putty in a small gap around a window will help keep the heat in. And it goes without saying – don’t leave windows and doors open if it’s not warmer outside than in.
8. Optimise your fridge space
If your fridge gets dusty it can struggle to function at full capacity. Make sure to regularly clean off the coils to optimise its performance.
Putting warm food in the freezer is another big no. It takes a lot more energy for your freezer to retain its temperature when you stack it with food that’s still warm. Let your leftovers cool before you stash them away.
9. Use your head with the washing up
Don’t wash up under a running tap. Fill the bowl up as much as is required for the level of washing up you have. If it’s just a few plates and cups, a third to a half of the bowl is all that’s required. You could also avoid rinsing your plates, as this wastes excess water.
Using a dishwasher? Make sure you fill it completely before you turn it on, to make the most out the energy it uses each cycle.
10. Monitor your energy use
Energy companies tend to use local data to estimate how much gas and electricity you’re using. While these are often close to reality, it’s impossible for them to be completely right every time.
By checking your own meters on a monthly basis, you’ll be able make sure you only pay for the energy that you’re actually using.
If you don’t already have a smart meter, it might be worth investing in one. These cut out the middle man, ensuring you get an accurate reading all throughout the year without having to check yourself.
11. Manage your energy smarter
Smart thermostats such as Nest and Hive, give you maximum flexibility when it comes to managing your heating. You can even control your heating when you’re out, using your smartphone, tablet or laptop.
Energy suppliers are currently working towards a full smart meter rollout, with the goal of offering one to every home in England, Scotland and Wales by the end of 2024. Why not ask your energy supplier about smart meter rollouts in your area?
Smart appliances, lights and plugs can also be programmed to switch off at particular times or when you leave the house, saving you money.
12. Make long-term investments
If you’re not planning to move in the near future, it may be worth looking at more long-term energy-saving solutions. Solar panels could be really cost effective for you in the long run.
You might save around £100 on your electricity bill each year, and more by earning money for energy you generate and sell back to the grid.
Re-insulating your home is another good investment, as is replacing your boiler if it’s getting old. See more about the grants you could get to make your home more energy efficient.
When you replace your household appliances make sure you choose the most energy efficient. See which appliances are the most expensive to run.
More Home Energy Advice
Use the Simple Energy Advice website to explore ways to save on energy such as through:
- home insulation
- boiler upgrades
- using more green energy, like solar power.
Use their Energy Efficiency Calculator for personalised energy saving advice for your building and in your area.
You can also find more useful information on the Lincoln Sustainability toolkit