With the terrifying rise in energy costs in the UK today, people are worried – and with good reason. Everything seems to be getting more expensive and wages are remaining fairly stagnant which means there has never been a more important time to watch your pennies.
But of course, finding genuinely helpful advice right now feels practically impossible. On the one hand you have the likes of Boris Johnson advising people to spend £20 on a new kettle in order to save £10 in a year…Yea, thanks, mate. Then on the other hand, “money-saving blogs” are offering expensive solutions that—while certainly would be helpful in the long term—are no good to people who are struggling right now.
Who can afford to install solar panels, and insulation, and have their windows replaced? For those who are living month to month, these tips aren’t all that helpful at all. This is why in this article, we’re going to try and offer some affordable ways to save money on your energy bills this year!
1 – Have your boiler checked and serviced
While this certainly won’t seem like the cheapest of solutions, having your boiler checked for any minor issues now can save you a lot of money this winter. Not only can you ensure that your boiler is working at maximum efficiency, thus getting the most out of your energy consumption, but your heating engineer may be able to spot any minor issues that—if left unchecked—could result in a costly boiler breakdown. Only ever use a certified professional for this task, our advice is to consult with a plumbing company, such as 0800 HomeFix in Richmond Upon Thames.
2 – Bubble wrap your windows
This might sound ridiculous and it certainly won’t do much for the view – or your curb appeal – however, applying a layer of bubble wrap that fits the inside of your window perfectly is a great way to keep heat from escaping your home.
By spraying a thin layer of water on your window and taping bubble wrap to the glass, heat from the sun will pass through the clear plastic and remain inside your home!
Again, it’s not the most aesthetically charming tactic, but it works!
3 – Seal up any gaps in your home
Sometimes, gaps in window frames and doors can be too small to spot with the naked eye, but that’s not to say that they aren’t there. One handy tip is to grab a piece of toilet paper and hold it in front of your windows and door frames. If the tissue moves, then there’s a clear sign that you have a gap that needs filling.
You can use weather-stripping tape or foam sealant to fill the gaps and prevent the amount of heating escaping your home.
4 – Place tinfoil behind your radiators
Placing tinfoil behind your radiators (with the shiny side facing away from the wall), you can reflect the heat from the radiators away from the wall and back into your home. That way, rather than simply heating the walls of your home you can get that little bit extra warmth flowing through each room. Sure, it’s another unsightly quick-fix but it does make a difference!
5 – Limit your extractor fan usage
If you have an extractor fan in your bathroom, try to be a little more conservative with its use. As fans remove warm air from the bathroom it is then replaced with colder air which is wasting your heard-earned and (currently very expensive to obtain) heat. By limiting the usage of your extractor fans you can retain much of that heat from your hot showers.
Yes, you will then be dealing with more moisture in your bathroom, but this can be counter-acted by regularly wiping down the surfaces and attempting to stay on top of any mildew that may build up.
Other handy energy-saving tips
Here are some other handy tips for winter-proofing your home this year:
- Put draft dodgers at the base of your doors (much heat is lost between rooms through the gaps at the bottom of each door).
- Let the sunshine in (keep curtains open during the day when the sun is out and close them tight once it sets to keep in as much of that natural warmth as possible).
- Drink hot drinks (as if you needed an excuse to have another coffee).
- Layer up (double up your duvets if possible, add extra blankets to the sofa, and wear more layers around the house).
- Cosy up with your loved ones (rather than everyone sitting in separate rooms, try to spend more time together by bundling up on the sofa, sharing body heat, and enjoying a good movie).
These are difficult times and many of these suggestions might seem ridiculous to you. In a first-world country like the UK, feeling compelled to put bubble wrap over your windows in an attempt to keep food on the table shouldn’t have to be a consideration, but if you are genuinely struggling and you are desperate for ways to make every penny count, we hope that this article can help!