The energy price cap increased on 1st October 2021 and is set to rise again in April 2022, resulting in households facing rises in energy bills. The following tips may help you to reduce these financial costs, and also may help to minimise your personal carbon footprint and improve the quality of your working and living environment.

Making your home more energy efficient can help lower your energy bills and with rising costs there's no better time than now to make improvements. The good news is Home Energy Scotland can help with that. They will let you know what funding is available to you – you might be able to apply for the warm home discount or get a grant to cover much needed home improvements. If your fuel supplier goes bust don’t panic. Ofgem is the UK’s independent energy industry regulator, is there to protect you if your supplier fails. This means you will not be left without gas or electricity and any payments you have made are protected.

Quick Energy Saving Tips

  • Only fill the kettle for what you need, overfilling the kettle wastes a large amount of energy – an estimated 70 million litres of water are unnecessarily boiled each day.
  • Washing your clothes at 30°C instead of 60°C uses a massive 57% less electricity.
  • Putting lids on pans while cooking uses up to 90% less energy, the food cooks quicker less moisture is released into the kitchen. If you have a gas cooker, keep the tip of the gas flame under the pan. The heat is in the tip not the side of the flame
  • Turn your thermostat down by one degree to save up to 10% on your energy bills. Most people don’t notice the difference and it can reduce your carbon footprint by 300kg!
  • Spending 1 minute less in the shower each day can save you 2,600L of water and 26kg of C02 per person each year.
  • LED Lightbulbs use 69% less energy compared to halogen bulbs, therefore is it worth considering the switch to LED especially in rooms where the light is used most often.
  • Turn appliances off at the wall when not in use, keeping them on standby will still use energy.
  • Try to limit 'screen time’ after you have finished working (it is easy to carry on looking at screens without a commute to break up the day). You can also reduce your energy consumption through your computer’s settings: setting it to ‘sleep’ after a certain period of inactivity and applying ‘dark mode’ where possible and practical to reduce screen illumination.

Keeping warm during winter

  • Don't put furniture or curtains in front of radiators. They will absorb the heat and stop it warming the room. If you have storage heaters, remember to close the output dial (sometimes called ‘boost’) before you go to bed or if you go out during the day. You may wish to invest in a thermostatically controlled oil- filled radiator, these retain heat efficiently and circulate hot air around the room, saving energy by heating a small space instead of the entire property
  • Make use of your tin foil - putting kitchen foil behind radiators reflects more heat back into a room. Just mount some foil on cardboard (shiny side outwards) and you’re good to go.
  • When the weather is particularly cold, it is often preferrable to opt for keeping the warm air in and cold air out over ventilation. You can do this by keeping doors closed between rooms, using draft excluders, and drawing curtains and blinds when it gets dark in all rooms, not just the room you are sitting in.
  • Investing in draught proofing can save you money and keep you more comfortable by preventing unwanted draughts coming through windows and doors. But still give your home an ‘airing’ from time to time to manage humidity and moisture.
  • When it is cold, make the most of the heat from the oven - both to heat your body and the air during and after cooking by opening and closing doors and working in kitchen.
  • Get into the habit of adding or removing layers of clothing to maintain a comfortable temperature and you may want to consider investing in clothing made from technical fabrics which regulate temperature and wick moisture

Money saving tips

Millions of households across the country are facing increased energy bills due to the new energy price cap. Ofgem have predicted that the average energy bill will increase by 50% this spring. If you are on a fixed contract, then this will not affect you until your contract runs out – after which you will typically see a large increase in your energy costs.

  • Consider installing a smart meter. Your bills will give you a certain level of detail to help you manage your energy consumption.  You can take this further by installing a smart meter or for a less high-tech option, a plug adaptor which records energy consumption that you can move around between devices. This will give you an awareness of how much each appliance is costing you.
  • Install a smart thermostat – you can make your heating more efficient by only warming the rooms you are using. They learn how long it takes to heat your home, so they can have it at the right temperature at exactly the right time. They can also be controlled by your phone, which means you won’t have to come back to a cold home.
  • When purchasing new appliances, pay attention to energy efficiency ratings; paying a bit more upfront for better performing units can save you money in the longer term.