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10 Painless Ways to Reduce Your Energy Bills

Posted on the 21 October 2013 by Gbmc @gladstonebrooke

Top 10 ways to save energy in the home

This week Npower became the latest UK energy provider to announce that it will be increasing its prices, joining SSE and British Gas. With rising prices, winter kicking in and Christmas just around the corner, many people will now be looking for ways to cut down their energy costs. That’s why we’ve put together this list of energy saving tips that cost little or nothing to implement.

On a quick side note: Have your tried our free comparison service yet? At least 10% of households could save up to £249 per year! Find out more here.

1. Get your loft Insulated for free

Certain households will be eligible to get free loft insulation, paid for using government-backed ECO funding. People who receive benefits such as child tax credits or pension credits usually qualify – check with your local council or look for an insulation company in your area. Even if you can’t get the funding, you can get loft insulation fitted professionally for around £300, or do it yourself for as little as £250.

According to the Energy Saving Trust, one quarter of the heat in an un-insulated home escapes through the roof. They recommended that you should have 270mm (about 10 ½ inches) of insulation in your loft.

Annual Saving: Up to £180

2. Get cavity wall insulation fitted for free

Cavity wall insulation prevents the warmth from ‘leaking’ out through your walls. Modern houses have it built-in, but older homes (pre-1980’s) usually don’t have cavity wall insulation – just empty cavities. If this is the case you can have the insulation retro-fitted.

It can be a little pricey if you have to pay for it yourself, but like loft insulation you may qualify to have it done for free.  Depending on the size of your house you could save up to £140 a year in heating bills.

3. Draught-proofing

Warm air can creep out of your home through small gaps and cracks – normally around doors, windows and skirting boards. You can buy inexpensive draft excluders for your doors and seal the gaps under your skirting boards with silicone sealant. Kitting out your entire house will cost around £115 and it will save you around £55 a year.

4. Switch to energy saving light bulbs

Energy saving “CFL” bulbs last up to 10 times longer and use less power than conventional incandescent bulbs. If you have large bright halogen lights you can also replace them with energy-efficient LEDs.

Replacing all the bulbs in an average house would cost an estimated £110 and would save you around £55 a year in electricity bills.

5. Turn the thermostat down by 1 ˚C

Try turning down the temperature setting on your thermostat by just 1 degree. You will barely notice the difference and it will save you around £65 a year!

6. Don’t leave appliances on standby

Pressing the “off” button on your TV doesn’t really turn it off – it puts it into standby mode, which still uses power. The same goes for your games console, DVD player, microwave, electric oven, dishwasher and a whole host of other appliances & gadgets. It is thought that the average UK household wastes £50 – £90 a year by leaving appliances on standby mode, so turn them off at the plug when they’re not in use.

Also, don’t leave phones, laptops etc. charging for longer than is necessary.

7. Don’t overfill the kettle

Do you really need to fill the kettle right to the top just for one cup of tea? Boiling just what you need will save you energy and money. Try using a cup to measure out exactly what you need (but make sure the element is always covered in an electric kettle).

8. Put the washing machine on a cool wash

The washing machine is one of the most power-hungry appliances in your home, and most of the energy it uses goes into heating the water. If your clothes aren’t all that dirty then turn the machine down to 30 degrees – it will still get your clothes clean and uses much less energy. Also, make sure you have a full load of washing before the machine goes on.

9. Dry your clothes on the line

Joining the washing machine up there on the list of big energy users is the tumble dryer. Leave the dryer off and put your clothes out on the line instead – it’s free, you’ll save energy and your clothes will last longer.

10. Change energy suppliers

If your gas & electricity bills are going up, don’t just put up with it – it takes mere minutes to do a price comparison online. Switching suppliers requires minimal effort on your part, and you could save as much as £240 a year (according to research from uSwitch). Use our free comparison service to see if you could save.

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10 painless ways to reduce your energy bills

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