5 ways to save money on your home utility bills

5 ways to save money on your home utility bills

No matter your budget there are ways to make changes to your home that will save you money in the long run throughout the year. Here are just 5 ways you can make changes to your home to save £100’s on your utility bills.

Draught exclusion

Excluding draughts in your home is a cheap way of stopping heat loss and therefore reducing your heating bills. You are bound to be losing heat through draughts around doors, windows, gaps in your flooring, up your chimney and any other areas where there are holes in your house.

You can do your draught exclusion improvements yourself so you do not need to pay for any ones else’s labour. You can draught-proof your home by fitting products for draft exclusion to your windows and doors, use sealant around the gaps in your skirting boards and fit a chimney draught excluder.

Reduce electricity waste

Similarly to the draught exclusion around your home, reducing your electricity usage is something that you can do for no extra cost. You can do this simply by changing your habits, such as, switching off lights and electrical appliances when they aren’t being used (this little change can save you over £50 a year), wash your clothes at a lower temperature, avoid over-filling your kettle and change your shower head to a water-efficient one (check with your water company – some companies give these shower heads away for free!).

Install a renewable heating system

Renewable heating systems including ground and air source heat pumps and solar thermal heating systems are a great way of generating your home’s heating and hot water supply from renewable sources.

If you have an electric heating system you really should think about replacing it. Although it is the most efficient heating system, the running costs surpass the benefits. For example, if you live in a 3 bedroom home that has good insulation, the energy savings trust has calculated that if you were to install a heat pump to replace your electric system you will save between £400 -£650 a year on your running costs and save between 4000 – 5225kg of CO2 emissions that your electric system would have expelled into the atmosphere over the year.

The initial costs of installing a renewable heating system can cost from £6000 – £17000 depending on the requirements and system you choose. However, do not worry about the costs because there is government funding in place in the shape of the Renewable Heat Incentive, where you can get funding for your system installation and be eligible for yearly income from your generated energy.

Insulation

Is your home insulated properly? Poor home insulation means that you will be losing a lot of your hot air to outside your home because hot air moves to cooler places, such as the outside air. Around 40% of your hot air is lost through your loft; therefore, prevent this heat loss by having loft insulation installed. This home improvement alone can save you over £150 a year!

Replace your old boiler for a condensing boiler

If you have a boiler older than 2005 and it needs replacing you will have to replace it with a condensing boiler due to new regulations stated in April 2005. Although condensing boilers are initially more expensive to buy and install than a conventional boiler you will recuperate your costs in reduced fuel consumption within a couple of years depending on the efficiency of your original and new systems. These saving are then carried on throughout the boiler’s lifespan of around 30% savings on your heating bills each year.

If you are currently experiencing high utility bills with your conventional boiler then it is worthwhile getting your existing system assessed by an expert to see how you can save money on your heat usage. Sometimes it is more cost effective to have better home insulation installed than it is to replace your boiler.

Image credit: Tristan Martin

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