Advice and tips on reducing energy bills
There are many things you can do to help save energy and lower your bills.
Whether you change your tariff or find out if you're eligible for benefits, every little bit helps.
Here are some tips that may help:
Turn off appliances when you're not using them, and especially before you go to bed.
Did you know, that appliances still use electricity even when they're on standby. They may look turned off, but often there's still a light on and they're still using electricity. Electricity that you're paying for. Some appliances use almost as much electricity while on standby as when they’re on.
Curtains and blinds are really good at forming a barrier to stop heat escaping. As soon as it starts to get dark outside, close the curtains and lower the blinds to help keep heat in.
If possible check that you're using Light emitting diodes (LEDs) rather than energy-saving bulbs (CFLs). LEDs are more efficient, turn on instantly at full brightness and work in almost all types of lighting.
Older radiators have valves which let you turn the radiator on and off. If a radiator is too hot, turn the valve clockwise. If the radiator's too cold, turn the valve anti-clockwise.
Newer radiators, or ones that have been serviced recently, will have Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs) (pictured right). They have numbers on, usually 1–6. The valve shuts off once a room is at a certain temperature, depending on the number set.
How do you know which number to set the TRV to? Here’s our handy guide, which assumes that your TRV goes from 1-6:
- Bathrooms — set to 6
Bathrooms have a lot of moisture, which can cause damp and mould. Keep your bathroom warm to stop the moisture settling and ventilate it properly to stop mould building up.
- Living room — 5 or 6
This is where you spend most of your time and usually where your thermostat is found.
- Bedrooms — about 3
We tend to sleep better in cooler rooms because our bodies cool down when we sleep and we’re often covered in blankets or duvets.
- Unused rooms — 1 or * (frost protection)
Keep doors closed so they don’t take in heat and set the TRV to the frost-protection setting, shown as a * or to 1.
- Kitchens – 1–3
Your cooking will warm the kitchen.
- Hallways – 1–3
You might need to experiment a little bit with the settings.
Energy companies have so many tariffs with different gas and electricity prices it can often be confusing trying to find the best one.
We recommend using an energy comparison site recommended by OFGEM, the energy regulator. A list can be found here
Make sure you have your fuel statements with you when you contact the energy providers. You'll need three things:
- Your postcode.
- The name of the tariff you're on.
- You annual usage information (how many kWh's of energy you've used in the year).
Your thermostat controls the maximum temperature in your home. It might look like a round dial attached to the wall or a digital read-out if you have a newer boiler.
If your property is always very warm and the boiler on constantly, you might find the thermostat is set very high. This means your energy bills and energy usage, is also very high.
We recommend setting your thermostat at 21°C to maintain a warm home at a reasonable price. When the room reaches the required temperature, the thermostat automatically turns off your heating.