Save money on bills and reduce your carbon footprint
“By turning down your main thermostat by 1 degree, you could save around 10% on your energy bill.”
THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC lockdowns across the UK increased people’s home energy use, putting many people under financial strain. Research from Citizens Advice  shows that more than half a million households have fallen behind on their energy bills. In the UK, 22% of our carbon emissions currently come from our homes – so as well as helping people save money on their energy bills, improving the energy efficiency of homes will reduce carbon emissions and have a positive impact on addressing the climate emergency.
With people around the country continuing to cope with the challenges and financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a more important time to ensure that people are aware of how to make simple changes in their homes to help reduce their energy bills.
TIPS TO HELP REDUCE YOUR ENERGY BILLS AND CARBON EMISSIONS
1. By turning down your main thermostat by 1 degree, you could save around 10% on your energy bill. If everyone in Great Britain turned their thermostat down by 1 degree, we would reduce energy bills by £670 million, while saving 3.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year. However, do make sure your home is warm enough during cold weather to ensure you don’t damage your health. The ideal temperature range to set your thermostat is 18-21 degrees.
2. Replace your bulbs when you can with energy efficient LEDs. On average it could save about £40 a year on bills. If everyone changed their remaining bulbs to LEDs, Great Britain would save £1.1 billion on our collective energy bills and cut out 1.8 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.
3. Get your timing right. As many of us still continue to work from home, if you are taking advantage of not having to commute by getting up later, set your heating to come on later in the morning. If you have a timer on your central heating, set it to come on only when required and if possible get a smart meter installed, which is estimated to help reduce a household’s electricity use by 2.8% and gas use by 2%.
Other schemes are available in other parts of the UK:
- Scotland – Home Energy Scotland
- Wales – if you are finding it difficult to keep your home warm or cope with your energy bills, contact the Welsh Government Warm Homes Nest Scheme
- Northern Ireland – contact Northern Ireland Energy Advice 4. Draught-proofing windows and doors and blocking cracks in the floor and skirting boards can save around £20 a year on energy bills.
Source data:  Research by Citizens Advice for Energy Saving Trust and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) between 2 November 2020 to 31 January 2021 – 826 respondents
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. You may have to pay an early repayment charge to your existing lender if you remortgage.