With our professional advice, you will save hundreds of pounds on your energy bills. By making your home more energy-efficient, you can save money on electricity and gas while also lowering your carbon footprint.
Our sound advice will help you save money and make your home more affordable, from selecting the right energy tariff to reducing the amount of gas and electricity you use. Some of our best tips just take a few seconds to execute, so you can start saving money on your energy bills – right away. Continue reading to discover how a few quick changes will save you over £300 per year.
1. Switch energy supplier: save around £200
There’s a fair chance you could save a lot of money if you haven’t switched your electricity provider or tariff lately. Since you’ll most likely be paying out-of-contract rates, this is the case. Even if they’re price limited, these are always the most expensive offers on the market.
Out-of-contract prices, also known as regular or default tariffs, are the rates that apply automatically to consumers who have not selected an electricity tariff or who did nothing when their fixed agreement ended.
According to our analysis, switching from a regular or default tariff set at the price limit level to the cheapest possible contract could save you about £200 per year. The amount of gas and electricity used in your home will decide how much money you will save.
According to energy regulator Ofgem, 11 million households are on a regular or default tariff, which means you might save a lot of money on your energy bill.
Already switched energy supplier? Try these:
- Make sure you’re on the cheapest plan.
- Choose paperless billing and keep track of your account online (some companies charge extra for paper bills).
- Direct debit is the preferred method of payment. This is normally less expensive than paying a bill after it arrives.
- Send metre readings regularly to ensure that your bill is correct. This will be done automatically if you have a smart metre.
How often should I switch energy tariff?
If you let a fixed tariff expire, you’ll be switched to a regular variable tariff, and you might end up spending hundreds of pounds more per year on your electricity bills than you should.
Most fixed tariffs are for a year, so switch to a cheaper offer once a year to avoid overpaying. Schedule the switch to coincide with the end of your contract.
Until an especially appealing offer comes along, you won’t need to turn more often than this.
We crunched the numbers and discovered that switching twice or even four times a year would not have saved a medium energy user more than switching once a year over two years beginning in September 2018. Switching mid-contract with some suppliers could incur exit fees, which will eat into your savings and add to the hassle.
If energy prices drop sharply a few months after you move, you might want to check a price comparison website; if you see in the news that energy prices are at historic lows in the middle of your contract, you might want to check that price comparison site again.
2. Save £75 by installing and using heating controls.
According to the ESE (Energy Saving Trust), installing a room thermostat, programmer, and thermostatic radiator valves – and using them properly – might save a typical home £75 per year. It will also reduce carbon emissions by 320kg per year in your house.
You should be able to do the following with your heating controls:
- Set your heating system and hot water system to come on and off when it’s convenient for you.
- Only heat the areas of your home that require it.
- Different temperatures should be set for different areas of your home.
- Maintain a steady temperature in your home without wasting heat.
- See our five tips for effectively using your home heating controls for more information.
- Reduce room temperatures by one °C to save £60 a year on heating bills.
Electric Heating Systems
A portable electric heater and a low thermostat may be more cost-effective – especially if you only need to heat one room. Investing in an electric heater could save money on heating bills over time if you live alone or work from home. You won’t be heating the entire house unnecessarily.
Smart Thermostats allow you to control your heating from anywhere in the world using your smartphone, tablet, or computer. Some have advanced features like learning your routine or adjusting settings based on the weather forecast.
Whether or not a smart thermostat can save you money depends on your lifestyle, how efficiently you currently control your heating, and whether or not you prefer it to traditional heating controls. Find out if smart thermostats are a good investment.
3. Replace light bulbs: save £180
Energy-saving light bulbs will help you save money on your utility bills. The annual cost of operating an LED light bulb is around £1.71. When compared to an old-style lamp, it could save you about £180 in energy costs over its lifetime.
Keep in mind that energy-saving light bulbs last longer than standard light bulbs.
Light bulb costs compared.
LEDs are the most energy-efficient light bulbs, using almost 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs can be had for less than £3 each, and some can pay for themselves in a matter of months by energy savings. See our light bulb reviews for more detail.
Already use energy-saving bulbs? When you leave the room, always switch off the lights and choose the best lamp for the room’s size or the job at hand. Here are five pointers to help you pick the correct light bulb.
4. Cut draughts: save around £20
According to the Energy Saving Trust, preventing heat from escaping through gaps around doors and windows could save you £20 a year in a typical home. Professional draught-proofing could save you even more money. Examine the areas below:
Windows Draught-proof the frame by wrapping it in draught-proofing strips. For sash windows, brush strips perform better.
Draught-proofing strips are used along the edges of doors, and brush or hinged-flap draught excluders are used on the sides.
Fireplace and chimney If you don’t use your fireplace, block the chimney with an inflatable pillow or cover the chimney pot with a lid. If you have an open chimney, you might save £15 a year just by doing so.
Skirting and floorboards Since floorboards must move, fill the gaps with a flexible silicone-based filler.
Loft hatches Using draught-proofing foam strips, you can keep hot air from escaping.
Have you already fixed huge draughty areas? Remember keyholes and letterboxes, which are smaller holes that let air in. Learn more about draught-proofing in our draught-proofing guide.
5. Select energy-saving appliances to save up to £213
If you’re replacing an appliance, choose the most energy-efficient model to save money on your power bills. Washing machine operating costs, for example, range from £15 to £63 a year, depending on size.
The EU energy-efficiency rating is the most visible indicator of a product’s energy efficiency. However, we calculate energy use in a way that represents how you actually use different appliances, so we can tell you which ones use less energy more accurately.
We disclose the annual operating costs for any large appliance, from TVs to dishwashers, in our lab tests. You can use our tests results to determine how much it costs to run appliances and which ones are the most cost-effective.
How much money would you save per year by using energy-efficient appliances?
Washing machine: £48
Tumble dryer: £96
According to a study carried out by Which? Replacing energy-guzzling kitchen appliances with energy-saving models could save you up to £213 per year.
Do you already own an energy-efficient appliance? More ways to live a more energy-efficient lifestyle can be found in our blog section.
6. Purchase a new boiler and save about £205 per year.
Heating consumes more than half of your annual energy budget. As a result, replacing an old, obsolete boiler with a new, energy-efficient boiler will save you a lot of money.
You could save up to £205 by replacing an old G-rated gas boiler with a new A-rated condensing model that includes a programmer, room thermostat, and thermostatic radiator valves. This is based on the Energy Saving Trust’s most recent calculations for a semi-detached house. You could save approximately £315 a year if you live in a detached house.
If you don’t already have heating controls, you can save even more money by installing them at the same time.
If you want to save money, a condensing boiler is a good option. They collect waste heat from the flue and use it to heat the water that returns from your central heating system.
However, a new boiler is costly, with installation costs ranging from £1,240 to £3,840. If you’re replacing a traditional heat-only boiler with a condensing combi boiler, you can expect to pay more. If you want to save money, you can wait until your boiler is beyond repair before repairing it.
Have you just replaced your boiler? Make sure you’re getting the most out of it. Ensure the radiators are in good working order and configure the boiler so that the heating only comes on when you need it.
If you don’t have a gas boiler, learn about other options for heating your house.
7. Home insulation: save up to £315
You will save up to £315 a year by insulating your loft and cavity walls.
A standard non-insulated three-bedroom semi, laying loft insulation to a thickness of 270mm could save £150 a year on your energy bills simply by reducing heat loss through the roof.
In a semi-detached home, cavity wall insulation will save up to £165 per year. While more costly to add, solid-wall insulation could save you £225 in the same form of home.
For anything, you need to know about loft insulation, cavity wall insulation, and solid wall insulation, read our comprehensive guides.
Is your loft already insulated? It doesn’t matter if you already have some loft insulation. Growing it from 120mm to the recommended 270mm might save you £14 per year.
By replacing your single glazed windows with double glazed windows, you can also minimise heat loss through your windows.
8. Quick energy-saving tips
If you’re short on time or resources, have completed the rest of this list, or just want to start saving some of your hard-earned cash on your energy bill right away, consider these suggestions:
Know what’s on your energy bill. It’s the first step toward finding out how much gas and electricity you need and where you can save money. You can buy an energy monitor or a smart metre to tell you how much energy you use in real-time.
Don’t leave your mobile devices on standby. According to the EST (Energy Saving Trust), this could save you up to £35 a year.
Install a water-saving showerhead. These maintain the strength of your shower while reducing the amount of hot water used.
Using energy-saving programmes and just run your washing machine and dishwasher when they’re loaded. Instead of using a tumble dryer, why not opt to hang your clothes to dry outside.
If you live alone, it could be more cost-effective to use an electric heater in only one room rather than heating the entire building.
9. Get A Discount
Money off your power bill, funds for solar panels or insulation, and incentives for the purchase of a new boiler are only a few of the latest schemes available to help you save money on energy.
10. Keep your energy bill under control
When you pay your electric bill by direct debit, you spread your expenses out over the year and stop large winter bills. Regular metre readings to your energy provider will ensure that your bill is as reliable as possible. This prevents a large credit or debit balance from accumulating.
Send metre readings to your energy supplier if you feel you’ve been overpaying and are in credit. And if it doesn’t match with your energy provider’s automatic refund programme, you may request a credit refund at any time.
Your right to do so is outlined in terms of your supplier’s licence. These state that it must immediately refund credit when you request it unless there are valid reasons for not doing so.
It will verify if your payments and credit will cover your expected usage for the next year, and it will include an up-to-date metre reading to ensure that a refund won’t result in debt or future payments. Usually, you’ll need to contact customer service or fill out an online refund request form.
Keep in mind that you should be accumulating credit for the coming winter, even though it’s summer. If you’re owed cash, however, don’t be shy. Request a refund from the energy provider.