The long-term news isn’t good about energy prices. The Energy Price Guarantee has come into force as of 1st October 2022 to try and mitigate the eyewatering energy price rises that were due to take effect this autumn and winter. The Guarantee means that an average household on a dual electricity and gas bill and on direct debit will not pay more than £2500 per year but this figure depends on how much energy you use. This help is only for six months for most households. Afterward, there might be more targeted help to vulnerable homes only. This energy price spike is a result of global energy prices rising and isn’t unique to the UK. Together with increases in interest rates and the cost of living crisis, we are all looking for ways to save money.
Here at Scott Findlay, we are keenly aware that our customer’s gas bills will rise and so the team has thought of some ideas of ways to save a little bit of money on energy which might help in the next few months. You might have some other tips too that you can use.
- Turn down your thermostat a notch. Doesn’t sound like a big deal? It isn’t but it can save you money. Turning down your thermostat by 1 degree can save up to £80 a year. That’s an easy saving to make.
- Don’t turn all your heating off and only rely on portable heaters. It is actually much more energy-efficient to keep your central heating on at a low level than turn it off completely and then on again to heat the home from cold.
- Limit the use of the tumble dryer. If you can, use a clothes horse at home in a well-ventilated room during the winter. But if you can’t ventilate the room where the wet clothes are you run the risk of dampness. In that case, a dehumidifier is a good alternative. There are many models specifically with a laundry setting that will dry clothes quickly and cheaper than a tumble dryer. Dehumidifiers need the room NOT to be ventilated as by doing so you make the dehumidifier work harder.
- Use smart controls for your heating system. As discussed in a previous post, most homeowners can save around 10-20% on heating bills when they switch from old, traditional heating systems to a Smart system.
- Review your on/off times that have been set on a traditional heating timer. Are you heating the house when no one is in or when you are asleep in bed?
- Take shorter showers. Reducing your shower time by 2 minutes from the average of 8 minutes can save you 25% - and you will gain an extra 15 minutes a week to do something else!
- Turn off unused appliances. Lots of appliances like TVs and mobile chargers are kept on standby or we keep them plugged in to charge even when the battery is full. Switching off appliances that we don’t need will save us a few pennies.
- Love a mug of tea? Only fill the kettle with the water that you need. It will take less time to boil and use less energy.
- Block draughts in your home - is cold air coming in under the door? Draughts are not only annoying, but they can make your heating system work harder to keep your home warm.
Installing better insulation. Loft insulation is a good place to start because it’s one of the most affordable ways to make a big difference to your heating bill, but you could get wall insulation too.
Install double-glazing if you can afford to. This can make a big difference in how warm your home is.
LED lighting is another great way to save energy and if you haven’t swapped over all your lights, then it is a must.
- Switch off lights in rooms that you aren’t in.
- Get your central heating serviced. An inefficient boiler will have to work harder and that will cost you more money than an annual service will cost.
- Install a new efficient boiler which will use less gas.
- Are your radiators heating up correctly? Are they making a gurgling noise or have cold and hot spots? These are signs that they may be full of sludge and that your heating system isn’t working efficiently. We’d recommend a power flush that cleans out the sludge and gets your heating system back to good health. This puts less strain on your boiler and saves money.
Do you have any other tips? As your local plumbing and heating company in Edinburgh, we are here to help with any boiler or heating problems. But we can also offer advice or point you to the right places where you can get support.