Energy-saving advice for the home

The cost of home energy has been a prominent feature in the news recently. With world prices dropping but the big energy companies dragging their feet in passing on savings to customers, Energy Switcheroo looks at some ways that energy and subsequent bills can be reduced from the customer’s side of the equation.

Here are some helpful tips that will help save you money.

Heating:

Cover all your floors. Unless you have dogs or cats in the house, carpeting or at least rugs not only look good and provide comfort, but are great at heat retention, especially if you have no floor insulation.

Raise room temperatures gradually. Quickly raising your thermostat temperature uses lots of energy.

Keep thermostat at 68-70 degrees in the winter, and 65-68 degrees at night

Shut the flue in your fireplace

Fit draught excluders. Search each room for draughts.

Portable heaters. They’re good for quick heating, but can be very expensive.

Get an energy-efficient heat pump, heating bills would seriously reduce.

Don’t turn heating off if going away, leave on lower setting.

Lighting:

Replace old bulbs. Compact fluorescent light bulbs are so much more energy-efficient.

Use the correct bulb. CFL’s come in various sizes and types, for different needs. Check the comparative brightness.

Use motion-detector lights for all your outdoor and possibly indoor lighting, CFL’s are convenient and last far longer, they will save serious money over the year. Timers could also be incorporated.

Use fluorescent bulbs in your workshop or garage.

Tips and tricks

Use microwaves to warm leftovers. You’ll use less energy than cooking with an oven.

Set your refrigerator between 30 and 42°F. Use a power-save option if there is one on your unit.

Dust the fridge especially the coils at the back of the refrigerator.

Keep your freezer as packed as you can, it will then use less energy than if it was empty. If there is not enough food, put in some plastic containers of water, but don’t fill them fully.

Use any appliance on economy mode, if it has one, especially dishwashers

Don’t be tempted to keep opening the oven door. You can lose 25 degrees each time you open it.

Let residual heat finish off the cooking process.

Use tight covers on pots and pans, and use same size pans to burners, to save excess heat being lost around the edges.

Lower water heater temperature settings from 140 degrees to 120 degrees, it will save money but keep water hot for showers and washing.

Always use a full load, in your washing machine.

Reduce energy vampires. Home electronics in “standby” mode still consume power.

Set your computer to sleep mode. Or better still turn it off, if you are going out for any length of time.

A quick look around your home and a few alterations will make a big difference to your energy bill.

Energy Switcheroo is committed to bringing you advice concerning all aspects of energy use. Please look at our range of products and services that can be provide.