Change your habits at home
As well as looking for a cheaper energy deal from a new tariff or supplier, changing just a selection of your habits at home can in fact cut your gas bill further. Here we take a closer look at how altering those habits you can make huge savings this winter, after all it’s the little changes that can make a big difference…
Get to grips with your system
Understanding what those dials and buttons are for on your central heating system is one thing that we all struggle with, but getting to grips with your system is the first and most important step in changing your habits and harnessing cheaper gas bills.
According to a recent survey by Big Six supplier British Gas, heating and hot water account for round 60% of your overall gas bill so becoming boiler aware can give you the means to make your current system as efficient as possible.
Wrap up this winter
Everyone is guilty of cranking up the heating to a tropical level during winter and many of us walk around in just a thin t-shirt throughout the autumn/winter months safe in the knowledge that our heating will keep us toasty. However by altering these habits you can cut your energy bill further, and have more money to spend on those little luxuries that you and your family enjoy.
The average temperature for heating throughout autumn and winter is 20 degrees centigrade, but by turning your thermostat down by one or two degrees you can stay comfortable and cosy, even if you have to reach for a woolly jumper when cold spells strike.
By turning your thermostat down by just one degree you can slash up to 10% off your annual gas bill, which is £55 off the average premium according to the Energy Saving Trust (EST). The same theory applies to your hot water, which like your heating doesn’t have to be on full blast all day long, especially if you are out at work between 9 and 5!
Give unused rooms the once over
Unbeknown to many those unused rooms in your house may be costing you more money than you think. By turning down the radiators in under used rooms you can harness savings on your gas bill so turn down radiators in these rooms to the lowest setting.
Improving the insulation within all rooms, both used and unused, may also provide the quick fix you are looking for to enhance savings on your gas bill.
Whilst not everyone can afford major renovations and refurbishment to boost its energy efficiency, heading to your local supermarket may just provide the materials that you need to make each room extra insulating. Start by fitting tin foil behind each radiator. The tin foil will reflect heat back into the room, meaning more can be enjoyed by your home’s inhabitants and less escapes through poorly insulated windows, doors and walls.
Amazingly around 50% of all heat is lost through a home’s roof and walls so taking these simple precautions as well as investing in loft and cavity wall insulation in the long term can help to make your home as warm and inviting as possible all year round.
Spend some time draught-proofing your home
Draught excluders may seem a retro solution to the age-old problem of heat loss within poorly insulated or older houses, however they can also provide a speedy way to keep heat in the rooms that you and your family spend the most time in without having to turn up your radiators.
There are countless ways that every consumer can turn their homes into draught-free zones, and it is evidently one of the cheapest and simplest ways to save money. As well as investing draught excluders, draught excluder strips and expanding foam fillers provide a handy solution to draughty rooms. These can be applied to fill the gaps found around windows, doors, loft doors, pipework, skirting boards and floor boards.
By taking on this simple bit of DIY and wasting less you can save another £55 per year!
Curtains are also a great investment for those looking to reduce heat loss and shave pounds off their gas bill. Lined curtains in particular offer a quick and affordable way to improve insulation and keep heat where it’s need – within the home. By drawing these curtains at night, you can prevent heat from slipping through the cracks.
Beware of the dripping tap
As well as being rather annoying, a dripping hot water tap can in fact put a strain on your gas bill, after all the more hot water you use (whether you know about it or not), the more money you will have to pay to heat it.
A dripping hot water tap has the potential to fill up to 69 baths each and every year, which equates to a lot of water, especially when you consider that just one bath consists of 100 litres of water. Always make an effort to switch off your dripping taps and consider switching your bathing habits to showering to save water and money. Showering uses just 35 litres, harnessing savings of up to £18 per year.
Cook up a storm with minimal heat
It’s not just your bathroom where money can be saved, your kitchen uses a lot of gas too and by changing how you cook you could shave money off your annual statement. For example, by simply using a saucepan lid when cooking vegetables and rice on the hob, you can turn down the gas without influencing cooking time.