Did you realize that the cost of heating your home and providing hot water accounts for approximately half of your monthly gas bill? With gas prices rising, thinking about your heating bill this winter might be enough to make you turn off the heat again. It can be a considerable portion of your monthly expenses. However, with the right strategies and practices, you can significantly reduce your home heating bills while maintaining a cosy living environment.
Governments and local authorities often offer incentives and grants (first time central heating grant, new boiler grant, etc) to promote energy efficiency. As temperatures drop and the cold season approaches, the rumbling of boilers turning on can be heard nationwide. After all, on a chilly day, there’s nothing better than coming home to a lovely, toasty atmosphere.
The good news is that you can do many things to take control of your energy and save money on home heating bills this winter. This article will explore various techniques and solutions to help you save money on your home heating bills without compromising warmth and comfort.
UK Energy Bill
Gas and electricity prices have risen over the past few years. The latest data (Oct ’22) show that annual energy expenses for a typical UK home range from £1,712 to £3,493.
Turn down the thermostat first!
Recent research found that 2.7 million homeowners set their thermostats to 25°C! Everyone in the UK lowering their thermostats could save £1.4 billion (billion, with a B) on heating bills and a lot of emissions. The ideal temperature is 18°C to 21°C; however, turning down your heating by one degree can save you £80 a year.
Understanding Heating Systems
Before you embark on your journey to cut down heating expenses, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with various heating systems available. From traditional furnaces to modern heat pumps, each system has advantages and disadvantages regarding efficiency, cost, and environmental impact. This knowledge will empower you to make informed decisions about optimizing your heating system’s performance.
How to save money on energy and heating bills?
Let’s look at some things you can do to save money on your heating bills and use less energy this winter.
- When you’re inside, wear layers and have a hot drink.
Maybe it’s not cold enough for you to turn on the central heating yet, or it is, but you refuse to do so for as long as possible. Either way, putting on layers and drinking something warm should help you keep the chill away. A hot water bottle and a towel wouldn’t hurt, either. This will save you money on your energy bills, but if it gets too cold, you may have to deal with frozen pipes.
- Stop draughts
To stop draughts, you should first figure out where in your house draughts are causing problems. After that, there are several things you can do in different parts of your home to stop draughts.
- Windows: First, if your windows are the main problem, you can get draught-proofing strips for the window frame. Brush strips are better for sash windows. Closing thick curtains is also a great way to stop draughts from entering your home. You can also put cling film over your windows to make a brief secondary glazing layer. This is a quick, cheap, and somewhat weird way to fix draughty windows.
- Doors: Secondly, close all the doors to keep the heat inside. You can put draught-proofing strips around the edges of the door frame and draught excluders on the bottom of the doors. You can make your own draught-proofing strips if you want an easy craft project.
- Fireplaces and chimneys: If you use your fireplace, you can skip this tip. If you don’t use your fireplace and have an open chimney, there are ways to stop fireplace draughts.
- Floorboards and skirting: If your floorboards or skirting have gaps, you can stop hot air from leaving by filling them. Use a silicone-based filler, though, because floorboards need to move.
- Upgrade your thermostat
Invest in a new thermostat because it communicates with your boiler to regulate the temperature in your home. When the temperature inside your home reaches the threshold set on the thermostat, the boiler will turn off and stay that way until the temperature drops. However, have you ever considered how long you’ve had your thermostat?
If you use an older-style thermostat, you may notice a 3-5°C delay before your boiler turns back on. It may not seem like much, but if you do that, your boiler will have to work harder and longer to bring the home back to temperature, increasing your energy bills.
- Turn down your thermostat.
When it gets cold, turning up the heat on your thermostat can be tempting. But did you know that turning your temperature down by just 1°C could save you up to £75 a year? Most of the time, you won’t notice a change, but it’s still worth trying. You can always turn the heat back up if you get too cold.
- Time your heating
Timing your heating is a good idea because you want to save energy while away. Even though most of us will be spending a lot more time at home this winter, there are still times when timing your heating is a good idea. You don’t need to turn on the heat when sleeping under a blanket or when you’re not home.
- Insulate your hot water cylinder.
You can save money and energy by insulating your hot water cylinder with a conventional or system boiler, but this is optional if you have a combi boiler. Hot water tanks heat and store water so that you can have hot water and heat your home.
- Choose which rooms to heat.
This tip is constructive for people who work from home this winter and have a home office set up. With thermostatic radiator valves, you can set the temperature in each room. They will let you turn down the heat in places you need to be using.
- Unplug energy vampires
Energy vampires are devices and appliances that use power even when not used. Chargers, laptops, TVs, game systems, and even the kettle are all guilty of using energy you don’t need when on standby. You could save a lot of money by unplugging them or turning off the plugs on the wall.
- Energy-Efficient Upgrades
Investing in energy-efficient upgrades might have an upfront cost but can yield impressive long-term benefits. Consider upgrading to energy-efficient windows and doors that prevent heat from escaping.
Radiator reflectors can enhance heat distribution, reducing the workload of your heating system. For those seeking renewable solutions, installing solar panels can harness the sun’s power to generate heat, further decreasing reliance on conventional heating sources. If you’re curious about how much you can save by making these upgrades, you can take a look at ppl rates increase.
In a nutshell, saving money on home heating bills is not about sacrificing comfort but making intelligent choices that align with your budget and environmental consciousness. Understanding your heating system can strike the perfect balance between warmth and affordability.
Contact Eco Energy Services to help you adopt efficient practices, fortify your home’s insulation, embrace innovative technology, and consider upgrades.
Moreover, leveraging government support and incentives like a new boiler grant can pave the way for a sustainable and cost-effective heating journey that benefits your finances and the planet.
- What is the best way to use central heating to save money?
Use your thermostat for central heating well. It’s much cheaper to layer up or put on a jumper and turn the temperature down a few degrees than to turn it up.
- Does it save money to turn off radiators?
Yes, turning off heaters in rooms that aren’t being used will save energy. But it might not lower your heating bills or even increase them!
- Is it cheaper to always keep the central heating on?
Experts say putting your heater on low all day is more expensive than you think. The cost of leaving your heating on all day will soon add up.
- What does Martin Lewis say about heaters?
Martin Lewis, a consumer advocate, has said that gas halogen heaters are a good way to get heat and are cheap to run. This has brought back interest in the heaters.
- What is the best heater to turn on at night and leave on?
Convection heaters, like oil column or panel heaters, are the best choice for a heater you’ll leave on all night. Their gentle convection heating makes for a good night’s sleep, and they don’t get as hot as other types of heaters, so they’re safer to touch.