It’s recently been announced that UK energy users could be faced with higher bills come April. This is the result of the likelihood of a new price cap. Given all of the other uncertainty facing UK residents at present, this is not welcome news, especially when you consider that the average UK household spend on heating and power is already £1,249 per year.
The good news is that there are ways for your household to save on the amount of energy and power that you use. This means that you can make savings and reduce the impact of any price cap changes.
Turn off lights and close doors
Simple changes can make a significant difference. How many times do people in your home leave lights on when rooms are not in use, or forget to shut doors? Every time this happens, it results in the use of more energy. It may be a small amount on each occasion, but it mounts up over time. Encourage everyone who lives in your home to turn off lights when they are not necessary, and close doors when they leave or enter a room.
Do not leave appliances on standby
Most appliances can be turned off when they are not in use. If you currently only switch items to standby, change to turning them off altogether and pull out the plug. This simple change can save you around £30 each year.
Think about thermostat use
Around half of your energy costs will normally be spent on heating and hot water for your home. This is why it’s so important to think about how you use your household thermostat. Do not leave it at a high temperature if it’s not required; lowering the setting by just one degree can save you money. It’s also worth thinking about investing in a smart thermostat. Doing so means that temperatures in your home can be adjusted automatically and that you can control temperatures using your smartphone.
Make sure appliances are energy efficient
If your cooker, washing machine or dishwasher breaks down, you should consider replacing it with an energy efficient model. This may not seem like an important consideration when you are shopping for a new appliance, but choosing a machine with a high rating can save you a significant amount of money over its lifetime. For instance, choosing an A+ cooker, as opposed to one with a B rating, can reduce your energy usage by around 40%.
Make sure your boiler is working effectively
If your household boiler is not working as it should, you could be spending a lot more on energy than you need to. You should have your boiler serviced every twelve months. This regular servicing routine also helps to prevent your boiler breaking down at inconvenient times, such as in the middle of winter when it’s freezing outside.
Wash clothes efficiently
Do not just ignore the settings on your washing machine; use the setting that is most energy efficient. Remember that you do not always need to use a hot wash to get clothes clean. If clothes are not stained you can usually freshen them up with a cool wash, although you need to check the washing instructions on the garments themselves.
After you have done your laundry, you can also save money by only using your dryer when necessary. When the weather is good, you should make use of a clothes line outside instead. Doing so also makes your clothes smell fresher.
Keep your draught-proofing and insulation up to date
You need your home to be warm during the winter months. This means that you will need to turn the heating on. If you do not make sure that your home is draught-proofed and insulated effectively, you could end up losing a large proportion of the heat that is produced. This means that you waste a lot of money. Check the draught-proofing and insulation in your home, and make sure that it’s updated if necessary.
Energy is something that you cannot be without. You need to keep your home warm, heat water and provide lighting and power. This is likely to cost you more from April onwards, if you carry on as normal. Taking some, or all, of the actions suggested in this article can help reduce the impact of any price cap rises. You may even find that you end up paying less for your energy and power.
If you live in London, you may be eligible for help via the Energy For Londoners Programme