As the winter season approaches, it’s important to find ways to keep your home warm without breaking the bank. By implementing energy-saving strategies, you can effectively reduce your energy costs while enjoying a comfortable living environment. Read on to discover some practical tips on how to save money on heating and energy this winter.
Ways to save money on energy this winter
Energy bills can become a source of stress during the colder months, so you’ll want to save as much money as possible this winter. Here’s some cost-saving strategies to keep you warm:
Invest in proper insulation
Proper insulation plays a crucial role in helping you save money on energy bills. By effectively insulating your home, you can minimise heat transfer, which means your heating and cooling systems won’t have to work as hard to maintain a comfortable temperature. Here are a few ways proper insulation can help you save money:
● Reduced energy consumption – insulation acts as a barrier, preventing the escape of heated or cooled air from your home. This means your heating and cooling systems can operate more efficiently, consuming less energy to maintain the desired temperature. Because of this, you can expect lower energy bills.
● Improved temperature regulation – insulation helps maintain a consistent indoor temperature by reducing heat transfer through walls, ceilings, and floors. As a result, your heating and cooling systems won’t need to constantly cycle on and off, leading to more stable and comfortable indoor conditions without excessive energy usage.
● Minimised air leaks – insulation not only helps with heat transfer but also helps seal gaps and cracks in your home’s structure. By reducing air leaks, insulation prevents drafts and the infiltration of outdoor air, which can lead to energy loss. This means your heating and cooling systems won’t have to compensate for the loss of conditioned air, resulting in energy savings.
Make the most of natural heat sources
You should take advantage of natural heat sources during the day. Open curtains and blinds to allow sunlight to enter your home, warming it naturally – at night, close them to retain the heat. Additionally, keep doors closed to unused rooms to concentrate heat in the areas you frequently occupy. You can also maximise the sun’s heat by strategically designing your home or office space. This can include positioning windows to maximise sunlight exposure during the colder months, using materials with high thermal mass to absorb and store heat, and insulating your space effectively to retain warmth.
Energy-efficient appliances can help save you money on your energy bills in the UK in several ways:
● Energy-efficient appliances are designed to use considerably less energy compared to their conventional counterparts. They are equipped with advanced technologies and features that optimise energy usage without compromising performance. By using less energy, these appliances can significantly lower your electricity consumption, resulting in reduced energy bills.
● The UK government offers various incentives and schemes to promote energy efficiency. For example, the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) provides funding for energy-efficient improvements in households, including the installation of energy-efficient appliances. By taking advantage of these incentives, you can reduce the upfront costs of purchasing energy-efficient appliances and further save on your energy bills.
● While energy-efficient appliances may have a higher initial cost compared to standard appliances, they offer long-term savings. The reduced energy consumption of these appliances translates into lower energy bills over time. Energy-efficient appliances also often have longer lifespans and require fewer repairs, further reducing maintenance costs.
Wrap up warm
Dressing warmly and using blankets can help you save money on your energy bills by reducing the need for excessive heating. When you dress warmly, such as wearing layers of clothing and using cosy accessories like hats and scarves, you can maintain a comfortable body temperature without relying heavily on heating systems. This allows you to lower the thermostat and consume less energy, resulting in cost savings on your energy bills. Similarly, using blankets can provide additional insulation and help retain body heat, especially when you’re sitting or sleeping. By bundling up with blankets, you can stay warm and comfortable without needing to increase the temperature of your living space. This will reduce the workload on your heating system and ultimately leads to energy savings.
Replace your inefficient boiler
Modern boilers are more energy efficient than older versions. If you have a boiler that is more than 10 years old, you should consider replacing it with a more efficient condensing boiler. The costs for replacing a boiler will vary, but a typical gas boiler replacement plus thermostatic radiator valves will typically cost about £2,300 (excluding radiators). An oil boiler replacement could cost around £3,100. You should check how much you could save on your fuel bill by replacing a gas or oil-fired boiler.
Reflect on your radiator
Radiator reflector panels are a great, low cost option to reduce your energy consumption. Fixed behind your radiators, they reflect heat from the radiator back into the room, instead of letting the heat out through an external wall. This will reduce the need to switch the heating on this winter.
Implement zone heating
Zone heating can be an effective way to save money on energy bills. By dividing your home into different zones and independently controlling the heating in each zone, you can optimise energy usage and reduce unnecessary heating in unoccupied areas. With zone heating, you can heat only the areas of your home that are in use, rather than heating the entire house. This targeted approach allows you to reduce energy consumption by avoiding heating empty rooms or spaces that don’t require heating. You will be able to customise the temperature in different areas of your home based on individual preferences and needs, meaning you can set lower temperatures in less frequently used rooms or areas, while keeping the areas you spend more time in comfortably warm. By avoiding overheating unused spaces, you can save on energy costs.
Insulate pipes to keep water hotter
Pipe insulation can reduce the amount of heat lost from the pipes in your home, keeping your water hotter for longer and reducing the amount of energy needed to heat the water. It consists of a foam tube that covers the exposed pipes between your hot water cylinder and boiler. All you need to do is choose the correct size from a DIY store and then slip it around the pipes. Pipe insulation can save around £10 a year on your energy bills. You should be able to do this yourself, however if your pipes are hard to reach, you might need to use a professional.
Apply for ECO4 funding
Introduced in April of 2022, the ECO4 scheme has replaced previous government-backed initiatives, such as ECO3. This scheme aims to support low-income households by providing them with low-cost, high-efficiency heating and insulation solutions. Targeted at properties that fall within the efficiency bands E, F and G, the grant can be used for the installation or upgrade of cavity wall insulation, central heating improvements and loft insulation. All of this is provided free of charge by the ECO4 scheme, but that isn’t the only benefit. With huge amounts of energy lost through poor insulation, using this government initiative to upgrade your home will save you money on bills month after month. The best thing about the scheme is that all you need to do is register your interest. Our dedicated team here at UKEM will take care of everything else for you: from checking your eligibility to enrolling you in the scheme, to ensuring all your energy-efficient home improvements are carried out by qualified tradespeople and installers.
Find out if you’re eligible for the government’s free energy scheme
At UKEM, we can’t stop the energy crisis. But we can help soften the blow for struggling families throughout the UK. Find out if you’re eligible now by filling in this quick and simple application form. It only takes a minute to complete and could lead to you saving hundreds of pounds in heating bills throughout the year! Contact us today for more information on keeping warm for less this winter.