Five ways to make your home more energy efficient
With our homes accounting for 40% of our emissions in the UK, we thought of sharing a few tips on how to improve your home’s energy efficiency, reduce your energy bills, and play your part in mitigating the effects of climate change.
There are many ways to conserve energy around the house, from looking at both the big picture and your day-to-day habits. Here are a few ideas on how to save energy at home and reduce your environmental footprint.
Turn down your thermostat and make it smart
The first thing to try is to keep your heating low. This can be tricky, especially in winter, but the lower your thermostat, the lower your energy bill. However, this doesn’t have to be a dramatic change – even a couple of degrees lower than your usual number could reduce the amount of energy you’re using and save you money.
Also, installing a smart thermostat could also help save you hundreds of pounds a year. Smart thermostat technology allows homeowners to regulate temperature from a wi-fi enabled device, enabling you only to heat the rooms you are using, so you can heat your home more efficiently and save money in the long run. What’s more, you’ll be able to see your savings thanks to monthly reports.
Insulate your loft
Insulating your loft is vital as part of a plan about how to save energy at home. The laws of physics teach us that hot air rises, which means that if your loft isn’t insulated during the winter, all that warm air will escape through the roof.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, a quarter of heat is lost through the roof in an uninsulated home. This is a big waste of energy and money that you can avoid by insulating your loft.
In the UK, the most widely used material for loft insulation is mineral wool as, at around £20 per roll, it is very cost-effective. Loft insulation, if installed correctly, should pay for itself many times over in its 40-year lifetime, making it an excellent investment.
Never leave appliances on standby
Apart from turning off light bulbs for energy conservation, you should also turn off appliances after use. Leaving appliances and rarely used electronics plugged in throughout the day wastes energy and increases your bill unnecessarily, while switching these items off at the plug allows you to save roughly £30 a year, according to the Energy Saving Trust.
Not only will this save energy, but it also prolongs their battery life and contribute to producing fewer emissions.
Install smart meters
Another important step to reducing your energy use is finding out how you’re actually using it. This is where smart meters come in: a smart meter is a kind of gas and electricity meter that shows you exactly your real-time usage info, such as kWh use and cost.
Besides the great benefit of making energy bills more accurate, smart meters also help you understand your energy consumption habits, bringing your attention to areas where you can make the most significant improvements.
Moreover, smart meters can offer access to dynamic time-of-use tariffs (electricity tariffs where energy suppliers offer different prices at different times of the day). This enables you to save on your energy bills while also taking pressure off the grid by using energy at off-peak times. You can learn more about the benefits of smart meters and time-of-use tariffs in our blog.
Go solar and install a smart solar battery
An important thing to consider when it comes to increasing your energy efficiency is solar energy. Nowadays, affordable solar PV systems can be installed to power your house at lower costs while also helping you reduce your carbon footprint. Moreover, by adding a smart battery to a solar panel system, the excess energy your home is not currently using goes into charging your battery, so instead of sending the electricity back to the grid, you can store it for when you need it. Learn more about the benefits of home energy storage.
This will help you save on your electric bills, as you will be consuming less from the grid. Still, it is also a win for the environment: the more of your own renewable electricity you can store and use, the less electricity you will have to take from the grid, reducing the strain on our planet’s resources and contributing to the world’s shift towards renewable energy.