When it comes to cheaper domestic energy solutions, the homeowner is often drawn towards money saving tips, as well as hints on how to use energy smarter.
However, in the past, this has meant reading in the dark and not cooking. The good news is that this in no longer the case! With a combination of change in habits, short and long term investments in your home, you could soon be enjoying lower energy bills.
Update ‘The Old Boiler’
Possibly one of the most expensive pieces of kit in any household is the boiler, and not just in terms of purchase cost. The Internet is awash with hints and tips on saving energy and one that appears time and time again, is the need to have a modern, sophisticated boiler, with a sophisticated thermostat system.
Prices of boilers are no longer as eye watering as you think but still, when the household budget is tight, forking out £400+ can be a big ask. However, the running costs of a modern boiler are far lower and you will reach the other side of winter, toasty warm but with a lower energy bill.
Investing in an all-singing, all dancing boiler and thermostat system is all well and good but if the warmth but, if the heat is leaking out of ill-fitted, single pane window and gaps under the front and back doors any gain is literally being lost. Think insulation before you take on a new boiler.
Quick tip – turn the heat down by 1° to save £55 a year. That said, turning it down to a more ambient temperature and layering on the woolly cardigan is not such a bad idea either.
The new system – only when you need it
Older boiler systems and thermostats operated on a clock system. In some cases, this was not a bad thing. You could have the house lovely and warm, waiting for you when you got in from, the kids from school. You could set it for coming on in the morning so no one was cold when they left their bed.
Except, the house may not have been cold at these points and like many other households, you probably switched it off and opened a window. The newer, more modern thermostat systems monitor the temperature in the house.
You set the optimum temperature at which you think you need it on. For example, if the temperature in the house falls to 15°, the boiler will kick in and it will continue to be active until the desired temperature is reached, such as 18°. It will do this at any time of night or day, perfect in so many ways.
But, if you think you could be heating an empty house during the day, then use the drop button on the system that tells the boiler you are not home, and that the lowest temperature has dropped dramatically. It also has ‘frost protection’, so you never have a truly cold house.
Quick tip – become super-savvy by installing a Vortex energy saver in the boiler that through a simple, yet effective scientific principle takes out most of the oxygen in the water, saving the system from corrosion. A super idea that see an extra 30% saving.
Look after the boiler and the radiators to get the most out of your system and keep it in tip top shape for longer. Just like a car, there are moving parts that can malfunction and also need some TLC every now and then. Don’t wait for it to break down but get the boiler serviced regularly. Flushing the radiator system every now and then can be expensive, but worth it in the longer term.
Add a little extra, and save a lot more – the exhaust gas from your boiler has heat in it; this is why you get the cloud of light coloured ‘steam’ from the flue. This heat can be recycled back in to the system and used to heat water, saving you another 33%. Most boilers can be fitted with a Passive Flue Gas Heat Recovery Device.
Shower rather than wallow in the bath
We all likes and dislikes; there is nothing better than a soak in the tub after a long, stressful day. However, is you are a daily bath taker you could be paying for this in terms of both increased energy consumption and more water.
‘Experts’ suggest that a 4 minute shower should be the norm – although teenagers struggle with this concept – but a daily bath over the year uses 13,000 litres of water. Far more than the average daily shower over a year.
Saving money on your energy bills is not hard. There are many hints, tips and additional pieces of equipment that can make small savings but, when added together, make a huge financial impact.