A typical home could save around €300 a year by being more energy efficient. Many of these measures are ‘low or no’ cost or simply about changing how you do things around the house – and the good news is these measures will continue to keep saving you money year after year. Before considering how you can take action to ensure your home is energy efficient, you can check that you are claiming all the benefits you are entitled to by contacting Citizens Information . This can be a big help when you are beginning to upgrade and adjust your home. The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) also provide a wide range of grants to help you upgrade your home, making it warmer, cosier and more energy efficient
You should also make sure that you have the best energy deal. If you haven’t switched in over a year it’s likely you are paying more than you should be. to. Using an online comparison tool is the quickest, easiest way to find out if you could be paying less on your bills.
If you have already checked your deal and what benefits you’re entitled to, you can now look at practical ways to help you house run cheaper:
Encourage short showers over baths
Having a bath is a costly affair. No matter how long you soak, you will have used up a lot of energy for the experience. A shower is much more efficient, and we can control the costs by the time we spend showering. If you reduce the average shower from 8 minutes to 4 minutes, you can save a healthy amount of money on your bills. You also use less water, which is good for the environment.
Wash clothes on a lower temperature
We tend to wash our clothes too often, and they are hardly dirty. Running a hot wash is a significant waste of energy, considering the same results could be achieved on a colder cycle. Most washing powders are now designed to be effective at 30 degrees, and this could result in a significant saving on your utility bill each month.
Bleed your radiators
Our radiators are most effective when the hot water can circulate unhindered. Over time, air can build up in radiators, and they do not effectively work. Often, to compensate, we turn up our thermostat to get to the desired temperature. By regularly removing the air from your radiators, you could save yourself a healthy chunk of your bills.
Seal off drafts
Windows, doors, and outlets all let in cold air and allow your warm air to seep out. Going around your home and working out where the drafts are could save you a bob or two. Sealing up gaps is a quick DIY job but one that makes a significant difference. Equally, try drawing your curtains and blinds on an evening, and you will reduce the heat lost from your windows by about 20%.
Switch off, not standby
The Energy Savings Trust estimates that appliances on standby cost us almost 95 euros a year. Even your toaster is using about the same energy sitting there as it does when you use it. These energy vampires are sucking the cash from your pockets. If you face a revolt over switching the cable television off at the wall, then try using a smart switch, which allows you to time when the electricity is supplied or not.
The Sustainable Authority of Ireland offers a range of tips for how to save money with proper use of your appliances. For instance, they suggest never leaving mobile phones on charge overnight, which is something most likely do. Also, pulling out the plug on some equipment is necessary to stop them bleeding power from your supply, your monitor is one such example.
Turn off your lights
We are culpable when it comes to leaving a light on when we leave a room. One bulb left on costs you a cent an hour. Wow, you think, hardly worth bothering. Now count the number of bulbs in your home by the number of hours in the day and consider how much potential there is for savings in a family home.
Turn down your thermostat
The ultimate way to save money is to invest in a smart thermostat that allows you to control which rooms in your home are heated. It also offers you the opportunity to switch on heating remotely, so on your way home from work. The smart thermostat will likely pay for itself within a year of use.
If this type of investment is not on the cards, you can easily make a significant difference by lowering the thermostat by a degree. We are all guilty of turning the heating up high for quick results, but a constant and even temperature can end up saving you a lot of money.
Improving the energy efficiency of your home is one of the simplest ways to save energy and reduce bills. And the good news is making your home more energy efficient can start with small, no or low-cost actions
Even these simple hints will reduce bills and save you money – and every euro counts.
Note: This is a collaborative post. Power to Switch is an independent energy comparison website which helps customers find cheap deals and big savings.