“The good news is that most homes can reduce their heat loss by 80% through insulation, and there are also some easy wins to save energy and money this winter.”
Have you got any tips to share about how to bring energy bills down?
Would they qualify for a Champions Award?
Here are some great tips from the Carbon Savvy newsletter:
Saving Energy at Home
Instalment two in our 10-part series on carbon saving in all areas of our daily lives, this month looks at some of the biggest and the easiest ways to save energy in our homes. Home is where the heat is – something we are all conscious of with the increasing fuel prices! The good news is that most homes can reduce their heat loss by 80% through insulation, and there are also some easy wins to save energy and money this winter.
Share the bills!
Interestingly, one of the best things you can do if you have a spare room is to get a lodger. Your home’s energy use is divided by the number of inhabitants, so not only do lodgers contribute to energy bills, they also reduce your carbon footprint. And they can also improve your quality of life: for example, sharing meals introduces new recipes, you can enjoy wider company, and delegate some of the cooking and household tasks. The government is so keen to encourage this that income from lodgers is tax-free for up to two rooms per household.
The retrofit industry maxim, ‘fabric first’, tells us to reduce our home’s energy requirement by insulating before installing new heating systems. The low-hanging fruit of insulation are topping up your loft insulation to 300mm, fitting draught-proofing and double or secondary glazing. These can reduce heat loss by 40%, offering a return on investment of as much as 10% per year through reduced fuel bills. Wall and floor insulation complete the retrofit, but have longer payback times. Finally, all good retrofits include ventilation to maintain air quality once you have sealed up the draughts.
Our top tip for this winter is to use heated throws and electric blankets. Most importantly, they cost just 1p per hour to run, compared to 70p for an electric radiator and several pounds for central heating. Keeping you warm on the sofa or at your desk, a great advantage is you won’t get drowsy working in hot air temperatures. We believe that if everybody, especially the elderly and vulnerable, uses heated blankets it will make high fuel prices much easier to manage.
More ways to save energy
For more tips on how to save energy at home read the Keeping Warm page on the Carbon Savvy website.