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Save energy at home

How to save money on your energy bills

Tackle the rising cost of energy

What's changed?

From 1st October 2022 the government's new 'Energy Price Guarantee' will cap the price that suppliers can charge for each unit of energy you use for the next 2 years.

It doesn’t mean your bill has been capped regardless of how much gas and electricity you use. If you use more than a typical household paying £2,500 a year, your bills will be higher.

See what you could do to reduce the energy you use and what financial help may be available.

Quick tips to get you started

1. Learn more about your energy bill

A typical household gas or electricity bill can be confusing. Take time to understand them better could help you make sure you're not paying more than you should be. You could also try USwitch's handy tool to check your current tariff and get more tips.

2. Adjust your thermostat by 1 degree

Using your thermostat as an on/off switch or pressing boost too often can mean more gas is wasted. Ideally set your thermostat between 18-21°c, better still, turn it down by just 1 degree and it could help lower your energy bill (Source: USwitch, 2021).

3. See what financial support is available

You might be eligible for help with your energy bills or making your home more energy efficient. It's worth doing some research to see what help might be available to you.

Save energy, room by room

Kitchen

Wash clothes at a lower temperature

90% of a washing machine's energy usage is spent heating the water, so washing at a cooler temperature will save energy and money (USwitch, 2021).

Place lids on pots when you’re cooking

You’ll use less energy and time to cook your food by preventing heat escaping from the pot.

Don’t overfill kettles

If your kettle doesn’t let you see how many cups worth of water you’re boiling, simply fill a cup from the tap, or however much you need, and pour it into the kettle.

Use 'eco' settings on appliances

Appliances, such as dishwashers, often have an ‘eco’ setting which is designed to use less energy. Although the cleaning cycle can take longer, it will be more energy efficient than an intensive quick cycle.

Close the fridge door

Leaving the fridge door open causes it to work harder to keep the temperature cool, so try to limit how long the door stays open. If your fridge has an alarm, make sure it’s turned on, in case you leave it open by mistake. Defrosting your freezer regularly will help it to run efficiently too.

Bathroom

Reduce the time you spend in the shower

A family of four could save £75 per year if each person spent one minute less in the shower (Source: Energy Saving Trust, 2021). Fitting a water efficient shower head will also reduce your hot water usage while keeping the sensation of a powerful shower.

Good ventilation is important

Taking a bath or shower in a poorly ventilated bathroom will create more moisture in the air, making it harder to heat. That could mean your boiler has to work harder to warm a radiator. If you don’t have an extractor fan, then keep a window open until any moisture clears.

Bedroom

Lower the temperature

Getting your bedroom at the right temperature could help you get a better sleep and reduce how much energy you use. According to the Sleep Foundation (2022), the temperature to aim for is 18.3 degrees Celsius. You don’t need to be that precise but fitting thermostatic radiator valves will help you to set the right temperature for different rooms in your home.

Get more from your radiators

When dust gathers on radiators in makes them less effective. Make sure you keep the top and back clear of dust. It’s the same problem with dust at the back of fridges but moving them can be tricky. Avoid drying clothes on radiators too – this makes your boiler work harder.

Living room

Turn off standby

Leaving appliances on standby means they’re still using energy. The same goes for any room but living rooms can be home to a range of household gadgets, from televisions to music systems. Although it may be a small amount, it starts to add up if you do this every day – wasting energy and money.

Let the light in

It’s common for living rooms to have the largest area of glass in the home. On sunnier days, natural light will help nudge the temperature up naturally.

Reduce draughts

It can be difficult to work out where cold draughts are coming from, but gaps in wooden floorboards or open fireplaces can be culprits. Under floor insulation is one solution, but it might be cheaper and less of an upheaval to fill the gaps with a specially designed filler. For fireplaces, whether you use them or not, it’s best to get professional help. Especially if the solution involves inserting a draught stopper or accessing the roof to change the chimney.

Set your boiler’s flow temperature between 55 and 60 degrees

Your boiler’s flow setting controls the temperature water is when it leaves your boiler. Its default setting is usually too high, it's a bit like putting your foot flat to the floor when driving. Turn it down a bit and your home will feel just as warm, but it could cut your energy bills (source: Octopus Energy, 2021).

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Home energy grants and schemes

There is ongoing support the government provides every year to people who need help paying for their energy. 

You might already be making use of it or others you might not have heard of, but be able to get. Take a look.