Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Reducing Your Energy Consumption In Winter

Tips for cutting back on energy consumption next winter:

1) Use radiators properly.
If your home is equipped with radiators, make sure you're getting the most out of them. Studies have shown that in nearly half (42 percent) of all radiator-equipped homes, radiators end up blocked by furniture, which reduces their effectiveness. Clear a path to your radiators when the weather turns cold. 

2) Heating your home in short, a sharp burst is more energy efficient than maintaining low heating throughout the day.

Common sense seems to suggest that the most efficient way to heat your home is to pick a tolerably cool temperature and lock your thermostat in at that point all day. The truth of the matter is that you'll end up spending more money on heating if you maintain any constant temperature above the outside temp. It's better to turn your heating on full-bore, but only when you really need it.

3) Don't treat radiators as clothes-dryers.
Another important tip for radiator-equipped homes: Don't try and turn these important heat sources to other uses besides warming your living space. If you turn your radiator as a makeshift replacement for your dryer, you'll end up drawing more heat out of the system and overtaxing your boiler. The net result is higher energy costs. 

4) Keep your freezer and fridge fully stocked.
Keeping plenty of food on hand isn't just a good way to prepare for bad weather. It also saves you energy because your appliances won't have to do as much work. It's easier to keep foods cold than to chill a bunch of empty air.

5) Pull all your thermostat settings down by a degree or two.
Adjusting to a thermostat setting that's just a tiny bit lower than normal can end up saving you plenty on your energy bills this winter. Take your thermostat down by one or two degrees. The difference is essentially unnoticeable inside your house, but you'll see the savings when your bills arrive. 

6) Look into cavity wall insulation.
Cavity wall insulation does an amazing job of keeping your home warmer in winter. On average, homes which installed it experienced a 15 percent reduction in heating costs. In many areas, you may be able to get partial or complete government subsidies to pay for insulation upgrades. 

7) Use more efficient light bulbs.
It can be a hassle to change over every bulb in your house, but you'll see a difference in power costs if you switch to the most efficient options (e.g. LED bulbs). A full changeover to the most efficient bulbs on the market today can make a small but measurable difference in your annual energy costs.

8) Take shorter showers.
Cutting down your average shower time by one minute can lower multiple utility bills. Besides reducing water consumption, you'll be using less power to heat the water ahead of time. Double savings! 

9) Unplug unused appliances completely
Appliances that are on "standby" mode end up consuming a shocking amount of power. Portable device chargers are even consuming electricity when they don't have a device plugged in. Get in the habit of not just turning things off but also unplugging them when you're not using them. It'll save energy and lower your bills. 

10) Don't boil more water than you have to.
Winter is the perfect time for piping-hot beverages like tea and cocoa. If you start the preparation process by filling your kettle up to the brim for every cup, though, you're wasting energy reheating unused water over and over again. Get into the habit of measuring your water-boiling needs by the drink you're making instead of topping up the kettle.

11) Find and eliminate unwanted drafts. 
Draft reduction is another area where the average home is shockingly unprotected. Research shows that nearly half (46 percent) of homes have no draft-exclusion measures in place whatsoever.

Check all of your windows and doors to make sure you're not bleeding expensive heated air out through undetected cracks. Sealing up drafts can drop your heating bills significantly.
If you wish to save more than SimplySwitch's energy comparison can be a great place to start.


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