How To Save Energy In Your Home
Tips on saving energy in our homes can help us to use and run our appliances more efficiently.
Making small changes in different areas of your home, from kitchen appliances to water usage, ensures you’re not unnecessarily wasting energy – and money. And while energy-saving tips may seem like minor tweaks to your lifestyle, they can certainly prosper a big return over the years.
Follow our top tips for saving energy at home as we explore how you can save on lighting, electricity, heating, water and kitchen appliances.
Table of Contents
- Energy-saving tips for your lighting bill
- How to reduce electricity use in my home
- Energy-saving tips for your heating bill
- Energy-saving tips for your water bill
- Saving energy on kitchen appliances
Energy-saving tips for your lighting bill
Lighting makes up around 15% of a typical household electricity bill in the UK, so making small changes can save larger sums in the long run.
1. Switch to LED lights
LED bulbs are around 90% more energy efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs.
As LED bulbs turn most of their energy into light rather than losing energy via heat, they use less electricity when lighting up your room, making them great cost-saving light bulbs.
Changing to LED lighting can save £2-3 per bulb per year, so replacing every bulb in your home with an LED bulb will reduce your electricity bill by about £40 per year. Well worth the swap!
Explore our guide to energy-saving lighting for more information on how LED lights save energy and money in your home and to understand the different options available.
2. Turn off lights every time you leave a room
Turning lights off every time you leave a room avoids wasting electricity, even if it’s only for a few minutes.
Experts estimate that you could save around £25 a year on your bills by getting into this habit, so ensure light switches are easily accessible to make it easier to remember.
3. Reduce the number of lights you have on in one room
Whilst layering lighting is ideal for creating an atmosphere, only having one light in a room can make a markable difference to your electricity bill.
Prioritise task lighting, for example, only having your desk lamp on when working, to reduce using lights unnecessarily.
If you enjoy a bright room, choose lighter lampshades, as darker shades will absorb some light. This way, you can keep your room bright and airy without multiple lights.
How to reduce electricity in my home
As we increasingly use electronics – TVs, laptops and game consoles – these devices now account for around 6% of energy bills.
1. Don’t leave appliances on standby
According to the Energy Saving Trust, turning your appliances off standby mode can save around £65 a year.
When in standby mode, devices use low levels of electricity, so we don’t often think to switch them off completely. But with televisions, game consoles and kitchen appliances on standby, and new household electronics such as smart speakers and Wi-Fi routers on for 24 hours a day, these appliances will gradually use a lot of electricity.
2. Don’t leave mobile phones to charge overnight
Mobile phones, on average, take around three hours to charge, so charging your phone overnight can likely waste electricity.
Instead, charge your mobile phone throughout the day or in the hours before you go to sleep and unplug it when it is fully charged. Charging your phone in aeroplane mode or switched off will be faster, and you can turn down the screen brightness or switch on battery-saving mode to keep your phone battery lasting longer.
3. Choose energy-efficient appliances
If you’re on the lookout for new appliances, be sure to check their rating. The appliances are tested for how much energy they use during one typical use and given a rating on a scale from A to G.
A-rated appliances are the most efficient and will save you money long-term. Replacing old fridges and freezers will help you save money quickly, making the investment worth it. Using energy-efficient alternatives, such as air fryers and microwaves instead of ovens, will also save you money, but over a longer period.
Energy-saving tips for your heating bill
Heating and hot water make up over 50% of our energy bills, so finding ways to save here will make a big difference.
1. Draughtproof your windows and doors
Losing heat through doors and windows, gaps around the floor, letterboxes, keyholes or unused chimneys is common for all households, even newer builds. This heat loss wastes energy as it takes more to heat the space, in turn increasing your heating bills.
Draughtproofing around windows and doors could save you around £60 a year, while even closing your blinds and curtains reduces heat loss by up to 17%. Pay a professional to draughtproof your home for larger jobs or do it yourself for smaller projects.
Just be careful not to block ventilation, especially in kitchens and bathrooms, as this can result in damp.
2. Turn down the thermostat – even by 1 degree
Turning down the thermostat by just 1 degree could save you up to £128 a year. Try knocking down the heating to a comfortable temperature, between 18 and 21, to heat your space without using too much energy.
Set a timer for your heating so it’s only being turned on when you’ll actually be using it, and use individual radiator valves to turn off radiators in unused rooms.
3. Increase your heating efficiency
One way to save money is simply by improving the efficiency of your heating where possible.
Bleed your radiators by letting out any trapped air. Air in your radiator makes them less efficient, so they will take longer to heat up.
Adding an insulating jacket around your hot water cylinder will also reduce your heating costs, saving up to £70 a year.
Energy-saving tips for your water bill
Water makes up around 12% of a gas-heated household’s energy bill from showers to baths and just using the hot water tap, as the average UK household uses around 345 litres of water daily.
1. Cut down shower time
It can be hard to pull yourself from a nice hot shower, especially during colder months. But estimates by the Energy Saving Trust show that cutting just one minute off your shower could save around £35 a year in energy bills and £30 a year in water bills.
Try out a shower timer to make you more aware of how long you’re spending, and try to keep longer showers to a minimum.
2. Check dripping taps
Dripping taps can waste thousands of litres of water annually. Be sure to turn off your tap fully to avoid drops and fix any leaky taps as soon as they appear.
Make sure you also turn off your tap when brushing your teeth to avoid unnecessary water wastage, and use a washing-up bowl when washing dishes to stop the constant flow of water.
3. Wash clothes and dishes at a lower temperature
When using your washing machine or dishwasher, be sure you’re using it carefully to optimise its use.
Use your washing machine on 30-degree cycles when you have a full load to try and cut down by one use per week. Apply the same logic to dishwashers, and you can save around £53 a year on your energy bill in total.
Saving energy on kitchen appliances
Kitchen appliances are usually heating or cooling products such as the hob, kettle, fridge and freezer. Powering these appliances makes up around 4% of your energy bill.
1. Defrost your freezer
If your freezer is thick with ice, it will work harder to keep cool, meaning you will use more energy.
By defrosting your freezer regularly, you can prevent it from using more energy than needed and save yourself some money.
2. Don’t overfill the kettle
Kettles are one of the most used kitchen appliances for endless cups of tea and filling up saucepans. The only problem is that we often overfill our kettles with more water than we actually need, which means we’re wasting energy.
Only fill the kettle with the water you need and save around £13 a year on your electricity bill.
3. Use smaller pans and keep the lids on
The smaller the pan you use, the less heat you will need, so using the right-sized pan when cooking will result in less wasted energy.
Keeping a lid on the pan will also help them to heat up faster, saving energy and, in turn, saving you money.
Make some easy energy-saving switches
Energy-saving switches will save a little each year on your bills. Carry out as many changes as possible, and those little savings will soon add up year after year.
By making changes that you can easily and regularly stick to, you can make noticeable savings and help your home to run more efficiently.