Energy conservation – save money on heating

Energy conservation - energy saving tips for heating and hot waterHeating your home and your hot water are two of the greatest energy expenses you will have.  There are a number of easy energy saving tips to reduce your bill without ending up with icicles inside your windows this winter! Energy conservation is a great way of saving money whilst helping to save the planet!

 

 

 

Timers and thermostats

These are the easiest of energy saving tips – ways that you can reduce your energy consumption and begin to save money on your energy bills with the flick of a switch or the twist of a dial!

 

  • Firstly turn the thermostat down by one or two degrees.  You’ll hardly notice the difference in warmth but you will on your bill.  You could save up to 3% of your heating bill simply by turning down one degree!  So during a particularly chilly spell, think before automatically reaching for the thermostat and maybe pop on a thermal vest or an extra jumper instead.  It’s very easy to turn it up, but also easy to forget to turn it back down again.
  • Make sure your hot water thermostat is not set too high.  It should be set at about 60°C/140°F.  Many of us set our water temperature too high unnecessarily – this is literally money down the drain!
  • Use a timer.  Make sure that you’re not heating the house at full blast overnight while you’re snuggled under the duvet, or during the day when everyone’s out at work.  Set the timer so that the heating comes on about an hour before you’re due home from work, or an hour before you get up, and the house will be lovely and warm when you need it.
  • When you go away, turn the thermostat right down.  Don’t turn the heating off completely, especially during the winter, because you don’t want to come back from holiday to a flooded house from a burst pipe!  However it’s very easy to forget this little tip when you’re excited (or stressed!) about the prospect of a family holiday.  Just add this to your holiday checklist along with taking the dog to the kennels and putting out the rubbish, and you’ll be saving money at the press of a button.

Insulation

A huge proportion of your heat is lost through windows, doors and the roof.  While we can’t all afford to replace our windows with state of the art triple glazed ones, there are some things we can do to help.

  • Firstly you should check your loft insulation – you could be losing up to 25% of the heat from your home through your roof.  However you could almost certainly qualify for a government grant to insulate your loft.  The majority of people can qualify for a grant to cover at least 50% of the cost – some will get 100%!  Apply now and a qualified installer will come and give you a free assessment – the work needs to be carried out by an accredited installer to qualify for the grant.
  • Similarly, you can get a grant for cavity wall insulation.  Again, you could be losing a high percentage of your home’s heat through uninsulated walls – some statistics say around 35%, so this is worth taking a look at.  If your home was built in the 1920′s or later, it is likely to have been built with two external walls with a cavity between them.  Insulation is performed by injecting an insulating material into the gap between the walls, preventing the transfer of heat out of your home.  You could qualify for a grant of at least 50% of the cost of this insulation, and some people will get the full 100%. Again, you need to apply for the grant before you get the work done, and have it done by an accredited installer.

Windows

Replacing single glazed windows with B rated double glazing could save you around £165 a year.  However most of us can’t afford to replace all of our windows immediately with energy efficient double glazing. Also, in period properties or those in conservation areas, double glazing may not be possible. We can, however, certainly reduce the amount of heat lost through our windows by taking a few simple precautions.

  • You should make sure the curtains are closed in the evenings.  Using heavy, well-lined curtains will really help.
  • Make sure that draughts around doors and windows are sealed, from a simple draught excluder at the base of the door to draught proofing strips around the door/window frames.
  • Secondary double glazing is significantly less expensive than replacing windows with double glazed ones. There’s even an ultra low cost solution – for a few pounds you could fit a temporary secondary glazing film secured to the window with double-sided adhesive tape. It’s surprisingly efficient and hardly noticeable.

Follow just a few of these energy saving tips and you should begin to see the benefit in your energy bills straight away!

 

Take a look at these products that you might be interested in:

Secondary glazing film

Secondary glazing film

Draught excluder

Draught excluder

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