10 ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency and reduce your carbon footprint.

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There are many ways to improve the energy efficiency of your home. In this blog post, I will discuss 10 tips that you can implement today to make a difference in your monthly bills and reduce your carbon footprint on our planet. From small changes like replacing light bulbs with LED lights, to bigger changes such as installing loft insulation or upgrading the windows of your home. These tips will help you save money and live more sustainably!

1: Smart Central Heating

Smart heating systems have started to become more and more common with popular systems by hive and nest syncing to home management devices such as google home and Amazon Alexa. A programmable thermostat can help you save money on your energy bills by auto matically adjusting the temperature in your home based on your schedule. These devices can be monitored and managed via your smartphone giving you the flexibility of operating your central heating system wherever you are in your home or even when you’re out and about.
Smart Thermostat

2: Turn Off The Lights

It might seem obvious, but turning off your home’s lights when they’re not being used is a simple way to save energy. Plus, it makes you more aware of unnecessary electricity use throughout the day! One of the most common things UK home owners can do to improve their energy usage is to simply turn off any lights when they leave the room.

A great way to make sure that you remember to turn off the lights is to install a light switch timer. This will automatically turn off the lights in your home after a set amount of time, so you don’t have to worry about forgetting.

Light Switch

3: Upgrade Appliances

Home owners can save money and make their homes more energy efficient by simply replacing old electrical appliances with Energy rated models: Replacing older appliances such as refrigerators, dishwashers, and washing machines with newer Energy Star models can save you a lot of money in the long run. However these appliances are expensive and in reality replacing all appliances in your home all in one go is unrealistic. Gradually over time homeowners should consider upgrading their appliances one at a time to help spread the costs, if an electrical appliance breaks down why not replace it with a brand new energy rated version.
Appliances

4: Unplug When Not In Use

Unplug electronics when not in use, many people don’t realise that electrical appliances still consume energy when they’re turned off, unplugging them when they’re not in use will help reduce your monthly electricity bill. If every UK household turned off their unused appliances, it would help to save huge amounts of energy throughout the country, reducing the strain on the power infrastructure. So next time you’re not using that toaster or kettle, switch it off at the wall and unplug it. Appliances left on standby whilst plugged in can use as much as a third of the electricity they would use if they were actually in use.
Plug Socket

5: Install Solar Panels

With the current global energy crisis and discussions following the cop26 energy summit centred around how UK homeowners can efficiently switch from using fossil fuels to more sustainable energy sources there has been much talk about the use of solar energy.

Installing solar panels is a great it way to reduce your reliance on fossil fuels and produce your own clean energy. In the past there used to be Green energy grants ran by the UK Government, however currently there are no grants available to homeowners. Hopefully this will soon change as a result of Cop26 as forking out for the installation of solar panels for your roof can get quite expensive, not only do you have to pay for the panels but you also need a system for storing and converting the electricity they collect into usable energy for your home electrics.

6: Use Less Water

Conserving water not only helps reduce your monthly water bill, but also reduces the strain on the UK’s water processing infrastructure. Common ways to reduce your water usage in your home include; installing a water butt to collect rainwater, taking shorter showers, turning taps off when brushing your teeth and even switching your toilet cistern to a low flush model which uses less water to flush the loo.

7: Recycle Your Rubbish

Recycling of house hold waste has been a hot topic for decades now, an over that time homeowners have gotten much better at recycling their household waste. Supported by local authorities and councils making the process much easier. Recycling technology has improved over this time meaning more and more materials can be recycled from paper through to used cooking oils.

Recycling not only helps reduce the amount of waste that goes into landfills, but also saves energy by requiring less new materials to be manufactured.

Homeowners should ensure that they are recycling as much of their waste as possible and if they’re not sure how to recycle a particular material there is usually plenty of information available online or from their local council.

Recycling Bottles

8: Install Loft Insulation

Installing loft insulation can help reduce your heating bills by keeping your house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Insulation comes in many forms, insulation rolls being the most common but you can also get insulation board and even spray insulation. The type of loft insulation you should use would depend on where it is being applied. If you are insulating the eaves of your roof structure spry insulation and board insulation are the preferred method, where insulation roll or “rock wool” is used to insulate the loft floor (or first floor ceiling depending on your view point).
Loft Insulation

9: Upgrade Your Windows

By upgrading your upvc windows and doors you can improve the energy efficiency of your property, one of the main areas in your home where heat is lost is through the glass panes in your windows. Double or Triple glazed windows can significantly reduce this heat loss, specially designed glass panes which are filled with argon gas also improve the insulation properties of your windows. The result is that your home stays warmer for longer meaning you don’t need to use your heating system as much.

10: Use energy efficient light bulbs

Replace light bulbs with LED lights: LED light bulbs use up to 90% less energy than traditional incandescent light bulbs and last up to 25 times longer. Although LED bulbs tend to be more expensive initially the energy savings combined with the longer lifespan of the builds soon outweighs the initial outlay cost of the replacing the bulbs.
Light Bulbs

Bonus Tip: Shut doors!

Whilst I’ve been sat here writing this article in the company of my children it occurred to me that one way to keep your room warm when you have been running the central heating is to make sure that the doors to your rooms are kept shut. If doors are open heat can escape from the rooms into other areas of the house, heat rises so usually this warm air will rise through the house heating the upstairs whilst leaving your living room cold. The result is that the central heating system would be on for longer than required. Alternatively as my mum used to tell me, put on a jumper!

Ok so this final tip was a little bit of a joke, however the point about shutting doors is sill a valid one.

That’s it for our top tips for making your home more energy efficient and reducing your own carbon footprint! Implementing even a few of these changes can make a big difference in how much energy you are using, helping you to save money in the process.

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