The cost of energy, today, is no joke. The energy companies seem to have free rein over the prices they charge based on profits the shareholders wish to reap. There is little we can do about that except to apply pressure on our local member of parliament to argue the case of injustice over the way these companies are bleeding the poor.
Photo source: flickr
There are, luckily, things we can do in our own homes to cut down on the amount of energy we consume without affecting our level of comfort. Reducing consumption is ultimately limiting the harm done to our planet, but it is the thought of lowering the amount of money that I give to the energy company that I find most attractive.
If you would like to get your home ready for a winter of lower bills, start now. Big savings are possible if you are committed to the cause, so here are a few ideas you can use to get the ball rolling.
The one thing guaranteed to reduce your heating bills is loft insulation. Even if you think there is enough insulation up there already, you can add to it and improve it further. The number one priority is to stop our precious heat travelling out through the roof. Houses that claim to be passive have loft insulation that is four or more feet thick. Keeps the heat where it belongs, in the living space.
Energy Saving Bulbs
Replacing all of the incandescent or halogen bulbs with LED alternatives will cut the cost of running them by more than half. There is even a replacement LED GU10 bulb for your kitchen and bathroom downlights, so switching to the new ones is easy. The LED bulbs have many advantages over existing low energy alternatives. They give instant light and do not need time to warm up which is so annoying when using existing energy saving units.
Seal the draughts to your home. If you have new uPVC doors and windows, the seals do an excellent job, so there will probably not be a draught problem. If your home still has softwood windows and doors, there is leakage. Draught proofing materials are available in all DIY stores and will pay for themselves quickly once your home is warm and cosy. Use strips around doors and windows and don’t forget to install a cover over the letterbox.
Single Glazing Problems
If your home has old windows that are single glazed, put some secondary glazing window film over them. For about twenty pounds, you can cover every window in the house and you will be very surprised at the difference it makes to the heat retention properties of the windows..
If your washing machine and dishwasher are old, the chances are that more efficient models are now on the market. Make substantial energy savings by purchasing appliances that are rated at A*** in this country. They also use less water than earlier models, so if your home is on a meter, you will make savings there too.
Each step you take will save a little fuel. Add them up, and the savings will be significant on your monthly bills. It is one in the eye for the executives and leaves more money for you; I call that a result.