Looking after the planet and keeping an eye on the purse strings are two trends which have become increasingly popular – and intertwined – in recent years.
Saving energy is one of the best ways to cut your household bills while doing your bit for the environment – but not everyone is clear on the best ways to reduce their usage by doing a little DIY or calling in the experts.
There’s a multitude of ways you can make your home more energy efficient – and caring for your boiler is a good place to start.
Having a yearly service with a Gas Safe-registered technician is essential for making sure your boiler is running as efficiently as possible. It’s also important you get your boiler looked at for safety reasons – knackered old boilers can leak carbon monoxide, which can be lethal.
If your boiler is over 15 years old, you be thinking about buying a replacement – this can cut hundreds of pounds off your annual heating bill. When shopping around, look out for highly efficient gas condensing models, as these will help you make the biggest savings. Also don’t forget to insulate and lag your pipes, as this will help to boost your boiler’s efficiency.
However, looking after your boiler doesn’t begin and end with the equipment itself. For example, leaving clothes to dry on radiators will force your boiler to work harder, potentially reducing its lifespan. The same principle applies when covering radiators with curtains or furniture. For this reason, the layout of your room is important – try to place sofas and beds away from radiators to ensure you get the maximum circulation and benefit from their heat.
The way you live in your home can also have an effect on your energy usage – the key is to do as many things as possible to reduce the temperate and how often you need to put your heating on. Draught excluders are essential, while you should consider getting a thicker duvet during the winter rather than leaving the heat on high throughout the night.
Even just the way you use your curtains can have a significant effect on your energy usage – opening them in the day will allow sunlight to naturally heat the room. However, as soon as day turns to night and the dark and cold sets in, close your curtains to keep the heat in.
By carrying out a few simple DIY jobs and making a few targeted investments, you’ll soon be cutting your carbon emissions – and feeling the financial benefit as a result.