Want to save energy and money around the home but not sure where to start? Especially during the cold months, energy costs are skyrocketing. Thankfully, the comparison website USwitch offers a comprehensive list of easy energy-saving advice for any household. Here are 15 of the best tips:
1. Use a microwave. Heat up food in the microwave as often as possible – it’s generally the most efficient way to heat up and cook food because its relatively small size means that a stronger level of heat can be focused on whatever’s being cooked
2. Be water-conscious. When you’re boiling food in a pan, make sure you only use the amount of water needed to cover the amount of food you’re cooking, because boiling water you don’t need can waste a lot of energy.
3. Shrink your bills, not your clothes. 90% of a washing machine’s energy expenditure is spent heating the water, so if you wash your clothes at 30-40°C you’re saving a significant amount of money.
4. Hang up your laundry. Air-dry your laundry rather than tumble-drying it, particularly if the weather is warm or windy.
5. Install a smart meter. If your supplier offers smart meters to customers like you, it’s a no-brainer to install one. By clearly indicating where you’re spending the most on your energy, you can take steps to cut down usage wherever possible and save money.
6. Use energy-saving lightbulbs. A lot of electricity is used in lighting your home, but you can use less energy by investing in specific energy-saving lightbulbs, which are readily available. You won’t lose any light, and you’ll save money too.
7. Use energy-efficient electric appliances. Some appliances, like dishwashers, run on electricity as opposed to gas, so it’s worth seeking out the most energy-efficient models to ensure you’re not spending more than you need to. Look for models rated A+++ by the EU as a general guide.
8. Double that glazing. If you’ve got single glazing (or a lot of heat is being lost through the doors and windows), install double glazing to more efficiently trap heat.
9. Get free solar panels. Having solar panels installed on your house could save you as much as a third on your electricity bills.
10. Apply for an energy-saving grant. There are plenty of energy-saving grants available to help with the cost of home improvements.
11. Stay warm, cut costs. Turning your thermostat down by just 1°C can save you as much as £75 per year!
12. Don’t leave the tap running. Turn the tap off when you’re brushing your teeth or washing your face – it can waste more than six litres of water per minute while it’s running.
13. Turn the lights off. When you leave a room, don’t leave the lights on unless you’re coming back.
14. Run cold washes in the washing machine. Washing your clothes at 30 degrees rather than 40 can save you a third on your washing bills – you’ll have to do a hot wash sometimes, but sticking to 30 whenever possible can make a world of difference.
15. Compare gas and electricity prices with Uswitch to make sure you’re on the cheapest tariff for you. It only takes a few minutes, it’s free and you could save hundreds.