Top Energy Saving Tips

Using energy more efficiently in your daily life comes easily once you get started. This site lists many ways to save energy around the house, at work and on the road. Here, we list the overall top six:

  • Many people keep their thermostat too high. Check it and if it’s above 20ºC turn it down. Lowering your thermostat by just 1ºC will knock 10% off your heating bill.
  • Much of the heat loss from a house occurs through the windows, particularly if they are single glazed. So keep your curtains closed at night, even in empty rooms and also ensure that the curtains don’t hang over the radiators as that will just funnel all your heat out the window.
  • Close room doors to separate heated from unheated areas of your home, and minimise the area you are heating. There is no need to spend money heating rooms nobody is in.
  • Turn the lights off when leaving a room.
  • Switch appliances off rather than leaving them on standby.This will save up to 20% of your appliances’ energy use.
  • Make better use of the timers on your immersion or boiler so you can control when the heating comes on and goes off. This means you have heating and hot water when and where you want it.

Insulation Tips

  • Insulate your attic well and save up to 20% on your home heating bill. If your attic insulation is currently less than 200 mm, then you should add further layers. There are a variety of suitable materials including mineral wool, rock wool, sheeps wool, polystyrene, cellulose fibre and multilayered foil.
  • Wall insulation can be increased in a number of ways. The pay-back period is dependent on a number of factors including type, thickness and quality of existing insulation. The most popular types of insulation systems are, (i) insulated dry lining, (ii) blown mineral or cellulose fibre or polystyrene beads into the cavity, or (iii) rigid external insulation with render or brick finish. Specialist advice should be sought in all cases.
  • Choose double glazed units when replacing windows. Much of the heat loss from a house occurs through the windows particularly if they are single glazed. Significant energy savings can be achieved if double glazing has Argon fill and low-emissivity glass.
  • If replacing the hot water cylinder, a cylinder with factory applied insulation should be considered. Such insulation is more effective at retaining heat than a lagging jacket, is less easily damaged and cannot be pulled out of place. A lagging jacket on your hot water cylinder will keep water hotter for longer and pay for itself in 2-3 months
  • Keep curtains closed at night and ensure that the curtains don’t hang over the radiators. A reflective foil, backed by insulation if space permits should be fixed behind radiators mounted on external walls

Alternative Wood Heating Systems

  • A modern wood burning stove can achieve efficiencies of up to 80% compared to only 20-30% for a traditional open fire. Wood pellet stoves with integral back boilers for heating and hot water production are also available.
  • Wood pellet / chip boilers offer a convenient alternative to a gas or oil boiler and can be tied into an existing heating system without inconvenience.
  • Wood log gasification boilers are more efficient than standard log boilers. These boilers are very suitable in situations where a source of wood logs is available, e.g. forestry, agricultural.