In this guide, our Business Energy Comparison experts are going to take you through our comprehensive list of winter energy-saving tips. We’ll also take a look at the factors that affect your energy consumption and the appliances that use the most electricity.
Winter Energy Saving Tips
As you are aware, energy prices in the UK are continuing to rise. This is concerning for everyone, especially during the winter months. Due to this, it’s important that you try to reduce the amount of energy you use this winter. This will help to reduce the amount that you pay for your gas and electricity bills.
Average Energy Usage Per Day In The UK
Before we go through our winter energy-saving tips, it’s important to know how much energy the average household uses each day in the UK. This is estimated to be between 8.5kWh and 10kWh. However, there are many factors that may cause a household to use more or less energy than this.
This includes the appliances you use and their energy efficiency. It’s also affected by the amount of time you leave them switched on.
Businesses can reduce the cost of their gas and electricity bills by switching to a new energy supplier. Using Business Energy Comparison, you can compare business gas prices, start your business electricity comparison and choose the deal that’s right for you.
What Factors Affect Your Average Consumption?
The number of electrical devices you own and regularly use greatly affects your energy use. Devices like laptops, kitchen appliances, and heating controls all cause you to use more energy. If these devices are often left on standby, they’ll increase your energy bills.
The size of your home
One of the main factors that affect your energy usage is the size of your home. If it has a large surface area and lots of rooms, your energy costs will be high.
If your home is poorly insulated, warm air will easily escape, increasing your energy use. Both your heating and cooling bills will go up as a result of poor insulation.
Typically, the older your home is, the less energy efficient it will be. This will increase your energy usage and your energy bill.
Your average consumption is also affected by the type of meter you have. Old meters are not very accurate and often result in higher energy bills. If you have a smart thermostat, you only pay for the energy you actually use.
How Much Electricity Is Used By Appliances In Your Home?
- Dishwashers: On average, dishwashers account for 2% of your annual energy costs. However, this number does vary between models. An A+++ model may only cost £23 a year to run. A B+ model may cost around £43 to run.
- TVs: This depends on the type of TV you own. For example, a 55-inch smart TV costs around 2p an hour to run. It uses about one unit of electricity when turned on for 12 hours.
- Ovens: Ovens account for around 3% of an average annual energy bill.
- Fridge/freezers: An average-sized fridge-freezer accounts for about 8% of a household’s energy expenses. The larger it is, the more energy it uses.
- Lighting: This typically accounts for around 12% of an average household’s bills. Leaving lights on in unoccupied rooms is also one of the biggest sources of energy waste within homes.
How Much Electricity Is Used By Appliances In Your Business?
- Heating and cooling systems: regulating temperatures in businesses can use a lot of energy. Heating and cooling bills account for around 40% of overall energy consumption.
- Lighting: the amount of electricity your business uses for lighting depends on the bulbs you use. Switching to energy-efficient bulbs will decrease your usage.
- Copy machines and printers: copy machines and printers use up a significant amount of electricity. One way to save money is to go paperless.
- Computers: laptops and computers contribute greatly to average energy consumption. Encourage your employees to unplug their laptops from electrical outlets whenever possible.
- Security systems: security cameras are usually 2 to 15 watts, but they often run 24/7. This means they use a lot of electricity.
To find the best business electricity rates on the market, use Business Energy Comparison. You can compare business energy suppliers and find a great deal for your business.
How To Reduce Your Average Energy Consumption And Save Energy This Winter
Upgrade your heating controls
Hot water and heating account for more than 50% of a typical household’s energy bills. If your heating controls are quite old, it’s worth upgrading them. You can do this without replacing your boiler.
We’d recommend installing smart meters or smart thermostatic radiator valves. This will help to reduce your heating bills this winter.
Reducing draughts is particularly important for older buildings. If you live in a brand new home, then draughts are probably not much of a concern. When you factor in installation and materials, it costs around £200 to have your home draught-proofed.
However, it could reduce your bills by £25 a year. If you install a chimney draught excluder, you could save a further £17 annually.
Turn your thermostat down
A great way to reduce your heating bill is to keep your thermostat at the lowest comfortable temperature. This is usually between 18 and 21 degrees Celsius. If you reduce your home’s temperature by one degree, you can save up to £60 a year.
It can also reduce your carbon footprint by up to 310kg of carbon dioxide annually.
Remember, when it’s cold outside, you don’t need to turn your thermostat up. Your home will still heat up to the temperature you’ve set regardless of the temperature outside.
Around 33% of heat loss in uninsulated homes is lost through the walls. So, it’s vitally important that you keep heat and warm air inside your home. The best way to do this is to fully insulate your walls. This includes both cavity walls and solid walls.
If you live in a ground-floor flat or a house, there may also be heat loss from the bottom of your home. So, you should also install insulation under the floorboards. This could save you up to £40 annually.
Heat loss also occurs through the roof of your home. Roof insulation will also reduce your energy usage.
Replace inefficient boilers
If your boiler is over 10 years old, it’s a good idea to replace it with a newer model. New boilers have much higher energy efficiency ratings than older boilers.
Replacing a boiler can be expensive and isn’t possible for everyone. Still, replacing it will save you money in the long term.
Install radiator reflector panels
One of our top winter energy-saving tips is to install radiator reflector panels. They’re inexpensive and are an easy way to bring down your energy consumption.
Reflector panels are also pretty straightforward to install. You fix them behind your radiators, and they then reflect heat from your radiators back into the rooms of your house. This prevents heat from escaping through external walls.
You only need to install them on radiators attached to your home’s external walls. On average, radiator reflectors save households up to £19 a year.
A significant amount of heat is lost through uninsulated pipes. This causes the water in the pipes to cool down and means that more energy is needed to heat the water in your home. The best way to solve this is to fully insulate your pipes.
This is another low-cost and easy way to save money on your bills. Pipe insulation consists of foam tubes. The tubes are installed over the exposed pipes that connect your hot water cylinder to your boiler.
You can buy pipe insulation from most DIY shops. You just need to find the right size tubes and then fit them onto your pipes. If you find it difficult to reach your pipes, then you may need to hire someone to do it for you.
Insulating pipes could save you about £10 a year.
Turn off standby mode
Another simple way to reduce the amount of energy you use is to ensure that your appliances aren’t staying in standby mode. When your appliances aren’t in use, turn them off at the plug. Most appliances can be turned off in this way without their settings being affected.
This basic action could save you up to £35 a year.
The only devices and appliances that do need to be left switched on are smart appliances. This includes heating controls and smart thermostats.
Reduce water usage
Water use and energy use are closely linked. Energy is used by water companies to treat your water and then pump it into your house. Energy is also needed in order to heat the water in your home.
On average, households in the UK use about 330 litres of water daily. Reducing the amount of water you use will help to reduce your energy and business water bills.
Here are some tips on how to use less water in your home:
- Install a more efficient showerhead
- Opt for short showers instead of taking baths
- Ensure that dishwashers and washing machines are full before you use them
- Use cold water whenever possible rather than hot water
- Clean the dishes using a washing-up bowl
- Make sure you turn the tap off when you’re brushing your teeth
Use energy-efficient lights
One of the best ways for you to reduce the amount of energy you use this winter is to switch to more efficient lightbulbs. This is especially true if you work from home, as your lights will be on more than usual.
The most efficient lights tend to be LED spotlights. They come in many different sizes, fittings, and shapes. On average, people save around £40 a year when they change their lightbulbs for LED ones.
Another thing to remember is to always turn your lights off in unoccupied rooms. Leaving the lights on in rooms that are unoccupied is one of the most common ways people waste energy.
It’s estimated that by ensuring the lights are turned off when they’re not needed, you could save around £15 a year.
The price of energy in the UK continues to rise. Still, as you can see, there are a number of ways to reduce the amount of energy you use. By following our tips, you can keep down the cost of your bills this winter.
If you run a business, then one of the ways you can reduce the cost of your bills is to use the Business Energy Comparison website. Business Energy Comparison can help you to find the best deal for your business.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it more efficient to turn off radiators in unused rooms?
Regardless of how many radiators you have turned on, your boiler still needs to use the same amount of energy to heat them. However, if it has to heat fewer radiators at once, it will work more efficiently. This means that the rooms where the radiators are turned on will heat up more quickly.
Your boiler will then turn off sooner, which uses less gas. So, ultimately, it will reduce the cost of your gas bill.
Should I leave my radiators on all day?
The Energy Saving Trust has stated that it’s a myth that leaving your radiators on all day is the cheapest option. They advise that it’s best to only turn them on when you need them. In the long term, this will reduce your energy usage and drive down your bills.
Can I use tin foil to make radiator reflectors?
Yes, if you put tin foil down the back of your radiators, it will work in the same way as radiator reflectors do. It will reflect heat away from your home’s external rooms and back into your house’s rooms.
However, you may need to replace it regularly, and it can be quite tricky to get right. So, we’d recommend buying some radiator reflectors instead, as they’re fairly cheap.
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