It is that time of year again when power bills often surge as households try to keep warm throughout the winter season. We list ways in which you could impact your next power bill simply by making a couple of changes to your home habits.
1. Warm up with winter accessories
Instead of turning directly to your heater to keep you warm this winter, start by keeping cosy with a warm winter jumper, socks, and blanket. Even think about adding an area rug to help insulate the floor. This is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to save on your bills this winter.
2. Home heating
In order to minimise the effect heating has on your energy usage, we recommend purchasing the most energy efficient heater that you can afford, and concentrate on heating only the rooms that need it. Heating your home during winter accounts for up to 40% of household energy usage, which can be tamed by keeping your heating at approximately 18-20 degrees. Be mindful not to overheat your home as every degree above the suggestion adds about 10% to your heating costs.
3. Time your heater
It is critical to use your heater in the most efficient way in order to minimise cost. We suggest programming it to switch on 20 minutes before your wake up and turn it off 20 minutes before you leave your house or go to bed. This will ensure your home is toasty warm, whilst still using your heater in the most economical way. We also suggest purchasing an electric blanket to warm your bed before going to sleep at night.
4. Cut down your hot showers
Hot water can add hefty costs to your power bills, with it often accounting for a third of the average household’s energy use. We urge you to resist the temptation for longer showers this winter by showering for four minutes maximum to keep your hot water usage down. You could even purchase a water-efficient shower head that uses 72% less hot water than an unrated showerhead, which uses up to 25 litres of water per minute!
5. Put your ceiling fan into winter mode
Don’t be fooled, ceiling fans aren’t only for summer! Many have a switch which will allow you to change between summer and winter modes, usually located above the blades. This permits the fan to operate in reverse, forcing the warm air that has risen, down into the room to cycle with the cooler air. This will warm up your rooms in winter without having to use a heater. For the best outcome, we recommend keeping your fan on a low speed.
6. Don’t make your kettle work overtime
If you use your kettle several times throughout the day, making tea, coffee or even filling your hot water bottle, we suggest ensuring that you only put water in the kettle as you need it rather than filling it all the way to the top. A full kettle costs more to boil than to run a ceiling fan for an hour, so boiling smaller amounts could save you more than your think!