The colder weather has definitely arrived in the UK and I’m sure in parts of the US too, and if the upcoming impact of electricity and gas costs on your wallet are frightening you, be assured there are some easy ways to cut your energy bill. In the UK, the government is trying to step in and is at last questioning the price rises proposed by our power companies, but I have little faith that the increases won’t happen, so for this winter I am going to take personal action and hope you will join me in some of these ways to cut your energy bill.
1. Silver Foil or Silver Bubble Wrap behind Your Radiators
This is one of the lesser used ways to reduce your energy costs, but all you have to do is put silver (aluminum) foil or silver bubble wrap behind your radiators. It is one of the easy and cheap ways to cut your energy bill because it stops the heat being absorbed into the wall; it is reflected back into the room.
2. Double Glazing
The numbers on how much this can reduce your energy bills runs from 20% to 4%. Still, it cuts something from your bills because it puts a vacuum in the space between outdoors and indoors. Some forms of heat cannot pass through the vacuum, which is how it keeps the heat in. They are also harder to smash, so they are better for security. Yes, it requires an initial outlay but it is good payback.
3. A Ceiling Fan with a Low Setting
This is a very delicate method, as you can end up making life harder. Set your ceiling fan on a very low setting (so it doesn’t use too much energy). Set it to push air down in the winter so that all the hot air that has risen is forced back down to you. In the summer you can set it to pull air up so that it cools the room down.
4. Heat the Rooms You Are Using
One of the simplest ways to cut your energy bills is to only heat the parts of your house you use. Two floors in a house are a big drain on your energy bills because you cannot use both at one time. Study how long you spend in each room and you will discover that you spend 80% of your time in just one or two, so why are you heating the entire house? And both floors? Turn off the radiators in the rooms you don’t use often. You can always turn them on when you enter them later if you wish.
5. Thick Curtains Are a Good Thing
Very thick curtains will help to keep the heat in your house. If you have a radiator in front of your window, then tuck the curtain behind the radiator so that the heat travels up the curtain and does not go out through the window. Open the curtains during the day to let the sun in so that it can warm your house. Close the curtains when the sun goes down.
6. Switch Your Energy Supplier
Not only can you find the cheapest in your area, but you are also helping to keep energy prices down. If more people switch more often, then power companies will be forced to compete more aggressively. They will offer lower prices and discounts just to keep people coming back.
7. Watch the Thermostat
If you are in bed, then the heating need not be on. It is one of those ways to reduce your energy costs that people seem to forget. You are not cold, and if you are then your bed and quilt are the problem. You can save money if you at least turn the thermostat down by five degrees for whilst you are asleep. You can also save simply by lowering the thermostat a notch or two and dressing in warmer clothes when at home. It costs nothing to put on a t-shirt and a jumper, but it costs you for every degree higher on the thermostat.
8. Draughts Are Cooling Your House
They come from everywhere. Parts of your windows have them (curtains are needed), they come from under your doors, they come through your letter box in the door (if you have one) and even from some types of key hole. The worst is your chimney and fireplace. Identify draughts and plug them where you can. Even keeping keys in the keyholes will help.
9. Insulate Your Walls and Attic/roof
This will save you a massive amount of money. A stone or wood house is not built with any thought to ways to cut your energy bill. Insulate the walls and the attic or roof and you will save a massive amount of money because the heat is trapped in the house - otherwise it is allowed to freely escape through the walls and roof. If you are in the UK, all homes have to have a certain amount of roof insulation and the government is paying for it. If you haven’t had yours checked yet, do so. It can save you up to £180 annually. Ladies in the US should check out federal and local schemes.
Now you know some of the ways to cut your energy bill are you going to inspect your house to see which you can apply? What measures do you take?