Here’s things you can do right now to save on heating, costing little or no money.
Switch Energy Supplier
This is by far the easiest ways to cut bills and is simple to do. By switching your supplier you could save on a whopping £250 a year although the exact amount saved will depend on how much energy you use.
And with Ofgem announcing a price cap due later this year customers will be protected from being overcharged for their energy. It is likely that consumers will be able to save around £75.00 annually or more if you are on an expensive tariff, which is great news.
You can switch every 6 weeks if you fish, but remember to check if there are any hefty exit fees first! There are many comparison sites out there such as the Money Supermarket, Compare The Market & USave some even offer incentives! Avoid estimated bills too and submit your meter readings!
18 is the magic number. With the thermostat at 18C most people should be warm enough in jeans and a jumper. If that feels too cold, try bringing it down in stages, starting at a comfortable temperature and going down by one degree each week to give yourself time to adjust.
Turning your thermostat down by one degree cuts your fuel consumption by up to 10%, so even a small change here can bring serious savings. If 18 still feels too cold put on a jumper, get a hot water bottle or get out a blanket whilst watching TV to take the chill off.
Use the sun, on bright days open curtains and internal doors, let the warm air flow through the home.
It’s All About Timing
Contrary to popular belief leaving your heating on all day is not cheaper. If your boiler has a timer function, it’s worth taking a minute to get the hang of it – with clever use of the timer, you can always wake up and come home to a warm house without leaving the heating on 24/7.
Remember that your house will take a while to heat up after you turn it on, and cool down after you turn it off, so try setting the timer so the heating kicks in 20 minutes before you wake up and switches off 15 minutes before you leave home.
In the evening, set it to come on 20 minutes before you get home from work, and turn off 20 minutes after you go to bed.
Or invest in a Smart Meter like the Nest learning thermostat, you can turn on your heating with your mobile phone or a tablet. This type of thermostat learns your habits and preferences and uses information on the internet about current temperatures. So it will heat your home at the right time and temperature, therefore wasting less energy. Another added benefit is that you can track your usage giving you a handy insight into how much your heating is going to cost to run as well as highlighting possible savings.
Don’t Heat What You Don’t Use!
This one’s obvious, but easy to forget: only heat the rooms you use every day. If you’ve got a spare room, or any other bit of the house you don’t spend much time in, turn those radiators down or off until you need them, and keep the doors closed so heat doesn’t leak in from the rest of the house. You can also keep temperatures a bit lower in hallways and corridors, as you’ll never normally be in there for more than a couple of minutes at a time. You can also save by having showers instead of baths, baths tend to use a large amount of hot water which costs money to heat.
Keep The Radiators Clear
Have you ever felt the back of a sofa that’s up against a radiator? Warm, isn’t it? But by moving the sofa away, even by a few inches, the hot air can circulate more freely. That’ll save damage to your furniture, and warm up the whole room. The same goes for curtains tuck them behind the radiator. And move that towel that’s been hanging on the radiator for weeks – put it away!
Hunt Down Hidden Draughts
Draught busting time! Some leaks will be immediately obvious (if you can see daylight through it and it’s not a window, it could probably use some attention), but some are harder to spot. You’ll often find big gaps where pipes or cables go into the wall, check for draughts behind the washing machine, under kitchen cupboards and around sinks and toilets. This is an easy fix with expanding foams and sealants you can purchase from your local DIY store.
Make sure your roof is insulated, if it is not it is worth investing in this as it can save you as much as £200 of your heating bill. Invest in draught excluder’s, thermal curtains and seal cracks in floorboards if you have any, also check your loft hatch for draughts too. Even simple things such as lining your letter box, draught proofing your doors and blocking up an unused chimney could save you up to £25 a year.
If you have tiled or a wood floor consider putting down a rug in the winter months.
Service Your Heating System
It is worth paying a Gas Safe Engineer once a year to inspect your central heating system especially if it is old. This is best done in the Summer months. Regular servicing will prevent any nasty surprises come Winter, plus this will ensure your system is running efficiently and therefore be more cost effective to run.
Do you have any money saving tips you would like to share? If so please leave a comment below!