As mentioned in our earlier guide ‘Free ways to lower your energy bills’, this week is #ZeroWasteWeek. An annual awareness campaign that highlights ways in which we can reduce waste, preserve resources and protect the environment in which we live.
To help you find ways in which you can support this campaign, we have put together a second guide. Sharing cheap ideas and small improvements to help you make your home more energy efficient and lower your energy bills.
1. Switch to energy saving light bulbs to save up to £40 a year
Replace standard or incandescent light bulbs, which are very inefficient, with energy efficient bulbs, such as LEDs. This can provide a good saving on your energy bills. Energy efficient LED bulbs not only keep rooms well lit, with the same light at a much lower cost. But they also last much longer than traditional bulbs, saving money on maintenance costs.
2. Install an energy efficient shower head to save £40 a year
An energy efficient shower head reduces the amount of water used by either regulating the flow or aerating the water. Some water companies will provide you with an energy efficient shower head free of charge. But if not, they can be easily purchased from bathroom stores, plumbing merchants or home improvement stores. Whilst not suitable for electric showers, which should be switched to ‘eco mode’, once a new shower head is purchased it can be fitted independently. This will not only save on your energy bill, but it could also save you an additional £40 on your water bill.
3. Find and fix draughts to save up to £60 a year
Draught-proofing is one of the cheapest and most effective actions you can take to prevent heat escaping from your home. Blocking gaps around windows, doors, chimneys and floors that let the cold air in and warm air out can have a massive effect on the amount of energy required to keep a room warm. There are many items that can be purchased from hardware stores to assist with draft proofing. From conventional draft excluders to newer methods such as window films. Window films are applied directly to the window glass to act as a form of temporary secondary glazing. Which helps stop heat escaping, keeping your rooms warmer.
4. Install Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs)
Installing thermostatic radiator valves to your radiators can help improve your home’s energy efficiency by controlling the temperature of a room. The ability to control the temperature in individual rooms helps to save money on heating bills by not allowing rooms to overheat and allowing rooms not in use to be kept at a low temperature.
5. Have your boiler annually serviced
An annual boiler service, by a Gas Safe registered engineer, ensures your boiler is free of leaks, is running safely, faulty boilers can be very dangerous, and is also efficient. An efficient, fault free boiler saves money on energy bills and on potential future repairs.
6. Deep clean of your heating system
Over time radiator systems can often build up dirt and rust, known as ‘sludge’. This sludge can prevent hot water from flowing through the system properly and can create cold areas on your radiators. Asking an engineer to carry out a ‘flush’ of your heating system (or deep clean) will remove the sludge and increase its efficiency. The engineer can also add chemicals to your system to stop the sludge building up again. This will ensure your system stays clean and your energy bills remain lower.
7. Balance your heating system
Heating systems can become ‘unbalanced’, meaning that one or more of the radiators in your home are not heating up properly. This causes cold and hot spots to emerge in a house. An engineer can carry out a process called ‘hydronic balancing‘ which ensures that the right amount of water is distributed in your heating system so that all your radiators heat up evenly. A balanced system runs more efficiently and lowers your energy bills.
Whilst these ideas are not free, generally they will only cost in the region of £10 to £150 to implement and should make a real difference to your energy bills and help the environment. #ZeroWasteWeek