There are a million ways to save on energy usage within your own home. While you may already be taking advantage of some of the ways to reduce your energy cost, there may be ones that you are unaware of. That being said, below is an extensive list of ways that you can reduce your energy costs. From simple fixes to week/month long projects, these are all ways that may work with your current situation. In addition they are split in 5 broad categories including appliances, lighting, insulation, heating, and competition.
While many people make changes to their habits and save through purchasing new appliances for their homes, they are still not addressing the single largest waste of power in their home, poor insulation. Every year, an average UK home will lose the majority of heat they produce through various openings to the outside climate. By taking the time and money to address these problems, you can earn back your investment in the amount of energy you save.
* Insulate Roof Heat Leaks
The majority of heat lost through the home is through the roof. This is for several reasons. First, heat rises as it warms up. Second, the roof and the attic crawl space are often not heated directly, with several small openings to the outside. Whether an opening is created through damage to the roof or air is escaping through the various nails, support beams, and fixtures, you can save a great deal by insulating these areas further.
*Insulate Cavity Walls
The cavity walls are another place that is usually poorly insulated with multiple small openings. By insulating this space, you slow down the rate of heat loss, decreasing your monthly energy bill. Given the complexity of filling this in, it may make more sense to hire a professional to do it for you.
*Lag Boiler Pipes to reduce heat Loss
By covering the boiler as well as the pipes, you will lose significantly less heat in transfer. While not much, it is not normally expensive to add some kind of insulation.
*Take Advantage of Grants for Solar
Even with the UK climate, solar panels can do a lot to decrease your annual energy bill. However, the biggest limitation to their use is the cost. Thanks to a number of available grants, it is possible to purchase not only solar panels, but solar heaters as well at greatly reduced cost. Once again, taking advantage of solar should be seen as a long-term energy and money saving plan. Expect to make your money back a decade plus down the road.
Heat can be lost through the windows as well as the window frames. This can be solved by double or triple glazing the windows. If you cannot afford this, then consider getting a plastic glaze to put over the window in stead. Either way, you will help stop cold drafts from entering your home.
While insulating covers what you can do to better safeguard your home against heat loss, there is one thing you can easily do in your home right now to cut down on the cost of heating.
*Turn Down Heat When Out of House
By turning down the heat when out of the house, you decrease the amount of energy your central heater is using. Contrary to popular belief, it costs less energy to reheat your home from a lower temperature then to keep it at the same temperature the entire time. Many thermostats come with a timer that you can program to do this for you. If this is not available, then at the very least you can turn it down yourself when leaving and turn it back up when you arrive.
Turn To the Competition
If your energy bills are consistently high, then maybe the problem is less with you and more with your provider.
*Local Competition over Big Six
There has been a great deal of competition within the local energy markets in the UK. These smaller energy providers can provide better deals to homeowners as well as a selection of different payment and usage types. By taking an hour or so to shop around your local providers, you might save hundreds with a competitor.
*Day and Night Meter
It is widely believed that using energy is less costly during the night. This is only partially true. If you happen to have an energy provider that records this and a meter that will record when energy is used, then you are in luck. If not, then you may want to consider switching your provider and meter to one that records nighttime use. By doing this, you can save a great deal without changing any of your habits while at home.