Every year, when the days grow shorter and the temperature drops, energy bills start to rise. It’s a good idea to try and limit your energy usage for the good of the planet at all times, but by doing so during the winter months, you can actually save yourself a bit of money, too.
But apart from making sure you don’t leave lights on in empty rooms and upgrading your appliances, how else can you save energy at home? Keep reading, as this guide will provide you with plenty of ways to limit your energy usage and lower your utility bills at the same time. So whether you’re looking to make big changes or for simple fixes, read on.
Arguably, the main reason for energy hikes in the winter is that we use our heating a great deal more than the rest of the year. Older analogue thermostats are notoriously inaccurate, and may actually not reflect the true temperature of a room, meaning that you are having to compensate and overheat. Upgrading to a digital thermostat is a wise choice, as these are much more accurate and help you to keep a more stable temperature in your home.
To make the best out of your thermostat, you could upgrade to a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats are 100% programmable and even learn from your behaviour and begin adjusting your heating accordingly. You can even control your heating from an app on your home, meaning you can cut the heating if you’re out all day, or start getting the house warmed up on your way home. You also get reports at the end of the month to show you your usage so you can find more ways to cut it down.
With the sun not rising in the morning until nearly 8 am and setting by 4 pm in the depth of winter, we’re forced to use a lot more electricity to keep our homes lit. For years we have been instructed to use low energy or LED bulbs. There is a wide variety of low energy options available in most DIY or hardware shops. Depending on which type you purchase, some energy efficient bulbs can use up to 90% energy than a standard bulb. This could save you up to £250 a year, depending on the size of your home and your light usage.
There are also smart lighting options available, which allow users to set a timer for the smart bulbs. These bulbs are low energy and can be set to come on when you arrive at home and turn off when you leave. This can help you save further by ensuring that no lights are left on when you’re in the house. Some systems come with many customisable options as well, including colour changing to help make the house festive for the holidays.
If it’s time to replace any of your larger appliances, like a dishwasher or washing machine, tumble-dryer or refrigerator, it’s worth considering purchasing a new item with better energy ratings. All new appliances are rated from A-D, with A, of course, being the most energy efficient. This information is readily available to you online and in store when shopping for your appliances, making it very easy for you to make an energy-conscious decision. Depending on your usage, making the switch could save you up to £100 per year on one appliance.
Having the right insulation in your home can dramatically save you on heating – in fact, it can reduce your energy spending by 1/5. Insulating your home can be a big investment, but you might be eligible for an energy grant from the government. Different schemes will provide grants for loft insulation, room in roof insulation, cavity wall insulation, and even external wall insulation. You can find out if you qualify by checking this calculator.
If you’re not looking to make bigger changes and instead are looking for ways to change your behaviour, there are many simple changes you can make, including:
-Running the washing machine at a lower temperature
-Using the tumble dryer sporadically
-Turn off the lights whenever you leave a room
-Turn off standby on your appliances and electronics
-Take showers instead of baths
-Use energy saving settings on appliances and electronics that have it
-Replace blinds for curtains – these can help to keep more cold air out
These are some of the ways you can cut on your energy spending and save money on your utility bills as well. If you do decide to take a big step towards making energy changes, like insulating your loft – you may find that you need to get some items out of the way. You can contact us about our short-term storage solutions and we’d be happy to help!