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10 DIY projects to improve your energy efficiency

Energy Efficiency (1)

We are passionate about saving our customers money on their energy bills. This starts by finding way to make your home more energy efficient. This is often the first step that many people miss before finding the cheapest energy deal to reduce household bills. .

There are lots of ways you can improve energy efficiency. We have compiled a list of the top ten solutions for saving energy in your home. Our list goes beyond the obvious decreasing your overall energy consumption.

1. Upgrade your appliances to more energy efficient ones

This doesn't involve much effort. If you have a washing machine or fridge freezer that has seen better days, the energy efficiency rating on these appliance may be quite poor. Buying appliances with a high energy efficiency rating is an easy way to lower your electricity use. Energy efficient appliances rate A+ or above offer cheaper running costs for years, so it’s an excellent investment.

 

2. Unplug appliances that are not in regular use.

Yes, we’re afraid your grandparents are right. You should be unplugging electronic devices when not in use. Not unplugging devices has a larger impact on your energy efficiency than you may think. The average UK home spends £35 each year powering devices in stand-by mode. Televisions and desktop computers left on are big offenders.

Your smartphone charger continues to draw power, even if nothing is connected to it. Get into the habit of turning things off and unplugging them at the end of each day. Make this simple energy efficient change to your habits and you will drive your energy consumption down.

An energy monitor is a great tool to help monitor your savings.  

3. Reuse and recycle old devices

This not exclusively a way to become more energy efficient, however, it is better for the environment. If you're getting rid of old mobile devices, some services may even pay you some trade in value.

Compare and Recycle, for example, will even offer cash for many old smartphones. Check with local charities if they will accept donations of old devices that still work. 

Never dump appliances in general waste. The chemicals that are contained need to be disposed of properly. Contact your local council if you need to arrange a collection of an appliance that no longer works. Or find your nearest recycling point

4. Sealing draughts can really boost your energy saving

One of the major ways heat is lost in your home is through draughts. Often hot air is lost through gaps between windows and frames. This is a killer to your energy efficiency.

If you are feeling a chill in your living room – take action! You can buy gap fillers from hardware shops. They can be easily fitted where you can feel gaps. If you would like to go one step further to improve energy efficiency, invest in some heavy curtains.

5. Reduce heat loss

Insulation is the best investment to your home's energy efficiency. More than half of the average home’s energy bill is spent on heating. Everything you do to insulate your home will reduce that cost and help you become more energy efficient.

Around a third of heat is lost through the walls, so cavity insulation is a great choice to improve your home’s energy efficiency. If you’re feeling really ambitious, floor and roof insulation also make a big difference. You may be eligible for financial support from the government’s Green Deal scheme.

6. Explore renewable energy

The simplest way to actively reduce your homes carbon emissions and become more energy efficient is to invest in solar panels. However, you do need roof space to install.

Solar panels can sometimes generate more power than your family needs. This means you can make a profit by selling electricity to the National Grid. This is a great way to go beyond the goal to just save energy.

7. Heat things up

Most homes in the UK use gas central heating systems. While gas is cheaper than electricity, it is a fossil fuel. That means it is not sustainable and results in carbon emissions and pollution. 

The good news is there are alternatives and will help combat climate change. Increasing numbers of households are turning to wood-powered stoves to heat their rooms. This is a great way to reduce your energy consumption and use less energy.

Newer technology, such as biomass boilers, are also energy efficient. They use wood-based fuels to heat your home. They do require quite a lot of space, but they can be considerably cheaper to run than traditional central heating systems. Other options include air source heat pumps, which work like the inversion of a refrigerator to heat your home.

8. Invest in an energy efficient boiler

If your boiler is more than 10 years old, it's likely to be costing you a lot of money. Investing in a new combo-boiler can dramatically improve your homes energy efficiency.

To ensure your boiler remains energy efficient, you should be getting it serviced every year. Boiler maintenance improves your energy efficiency by as much as 15%. Make a note in your calendar to make an appointment with a certified boiler technician.

9. Take control of your thermostat

Your thermostat controls the temperature in your home. Use it wisely. Turning your thermostat down by just one degree could save £60 a year on your energy bills.

You can use multiple thermostats to create heating zones to boost energy efficiency. That means you can control the heating, and reduce the need for energy.

Smart thermostats give you even greater control of your energy usage. The Nest Thermostat claims to learn your habits to ensure your home is energy efficient and is only warm when you are present.

10. Energy efficient lighting

Low energy and LED lights are game changers for energy efficiency. They use 70% less power than conventional bulbs. If you haven’t already switched, do it now. They’re also available in a huge range of fun colours and styles.

Switching your lighting to LED will dramatically improve energy efficiency and you will see an immediate difference in your energy saving.

Don’t forget about your other fittings. We use water and hot water heating when we shower. Consider switching to a water-saving showerhead to reduce waste. Low flow taps can also ensure you are carefully managing the water you use throughout your home.

These simple efficiency improvements partnered with switching your energy supplier will offer a great energy saving for your home. Becoming a more energy efficient home doesn't just benefit your monthly expenses, you will also do your bit for reducing carbon emissions. Something we should all be actively doing.

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