Garages, sheds, and outbuildings can be great spaces to store equipment or work on your hobbies. However, if you use energy in those spaces, it can cause a surge in your bills.
The good news is there are lots of ways to save money on the energy you use in your shed, garage, or outbuilding. Here, we take a look at some top tips to reduce your energy bills, no matter what you use energy for.
Powering through your outbuilding
The first thing to consider is whether you need to be reliant on the grid. It could be more cost-effective to power your shed, garage or outbuilding (and even your home) with renewable energy you produce.
One way would be by installing solar panels. Solar panels could produce the energy you use in your outbuilding. You wouldn’t require expensive panels if you want to power a few lights. The first thing to do will be to work out how much power you will need.
If you have space and are willing to invest, you may be eligible for financial support – a loan or a grant - from the UK government’s Green Deal.
The scheme supports the purchasing and installation of solar panels. The Green Deal is also available for other home improvements that can improve your energy efficiencies, such as double-glazing windows, insulation, and draught-proofing. These can be useful in a shed, garage or outbuilding as well as within your home.
Other energy productions you could consider are air source heat pumps. Air pumps are generally installed in a building adjacent to homes to provide renewable energy.
They work by facilitating the transference of heat from the air outside to provide warmth via a wet central heating system.
The system delivers heating for your home and hot water. Heat pumps work a bit like a refrigerator which absorbs heat externally and changes it to keep your food and drink cold.
Heating your home makes up over two-thirds of the average household’s energy bill. They can drastically reduce your household bills, as well as helping your home to become carbon neutral. It could be an effective use of an outbuilding. However, to work correctly, your house would need to have a high specification of existing insulation.
Biomass boilers are another renewable energy source that requires a bit of room to install. They work by heating your home using wood-based fuels. Because they need space for the boiler (which is larger than a standard gas boiler) and for the storage of fuel, some may choose to use an outbuilding for the installation of a biomass boiler.
As the average household spends £1,138 every year on electricity and gas bills moving away from fossil fuels can save you a lot of money on your future expenses.
Consider your outbuildings lighting
If you use lighting in your garage or shed, switching to LED lighting will mean your energy costs are low. LED lights are as much as 70% more energy-efficient than standard incandescent bulbs.
Equally, installing insulation can make sure the space stays warm and can be useful if you an intending on heating over the winter. If you have a garage, insulating the door can be done cheaply.
Don’t leave appliances plugged in
Another way to watch your energy consumption is to check that appliances and tools don’t stay plugged in when not in use.
Many of us keep dryers or other household items in the garage, but you will save energy by unplugging them when not in use.
Check your outbuildings insulation
Installing insulation can make sure the space stays warm and can be useful if you an intending on heating over the winter. If you have a garage, insulating the door can be done cheaply.
Take the time to check the gaps around doors and windows. Air can easily escape. If your outbuilding is connected to your home and poorly insulated, it will impact the efficiency of your heating system. Applying strips to seal gaps can make a big difference to your heating bill over time.
Keeping energy costs down
Beyond finding ways to reduce your energy use, you can ensure your costs stay low by comparing home energy prices.
This will ensure that the electricity you use in your shed, garage, or outbuilding stays affordable.
To find out how much you could save by switching, simply complete our home energy comparison calculator.
If you’d like more energy saving tips from Love Energy Savings, take a look at our latest guides and advice.