Save money on your monthly energy bills with Refresh NI.
Energy Bills are rising, do you know how to reduce your energy consumption?
The cost of living crisis is here, it is real and for some, it can be frightening. Sadly, 48% of adults in the UK report they are struggling to afford their energy bills. And from October 1st, 2022, customers across Northern Ireland will notice a further hike in their monthly bills.
Households across the UK have been promised support by The Government. Through introducing a new Energy Price Cap of £2,500 for the average household energy bill plus a £400 rebate, to help tackle soaring costs which the Government is in the process of delivering to NI households. Here at Refresh NI, we want to support our customers in any way we can. Our core business is to provide affordable energy efficient home improvement services which can save you money. We also try to provide useful tips, advice, and guidance to save money on your energy bills. Therefore, we are creating a new money-saving blog series to help our customers where we can.
A recent survey showed that 82% of adults in the UK feel very/somewhat worried about the rising energy costs, a 72% increase since the question was first asked in a survey back in April 2022. Therefore, today we are sharing our top energy-saving tips. There are both short and long-term options available to save on your energy bill. While we understand during this difficult time, that disposable income is minimal, there are low-cost, short-term solutions that can still be very efficient and effective.
Affordable, short term money saving solutions include:
Understand your heating system
Simply read your boiler manual or watch a YouTube video. Understand and utilize your boiler controls to maximize usage and benefits.
Navigating the thermostat allows you to find the best temperature for your home, reducing the thermostat by just one degree can save £105 a year.
Additionally, the timer feature allows you to control when, and for how long the heating comes on, the power is in your hands.
Finally, adjust radiator valves to control the temperature in different rooms of the house, and turn the temperature down in rooms that are not used regularly.
Book a Boiler Service
Ensure your boiler is working efficiently and allow energy-saving adjustments to be made e.g. reduce flow temperature to save costs. Moreover, Refresh NI offers Boiler Services for just £45. Please note it is advised your Boiler should be serviced once a year to ensure it is safe and functioning as effectively as it should.
Reflect the heat
Invest in radiator panels and reflect the warmth into the room. Radiator panels release a combination or radiant and connective heat into a room as hot water flows through them. These panels are easily installed. You can also place aluminum foil behind the radiator for a similar effect for even less money.
Brighten up your home
Switch to LED Lighting fixtures; they are brighter, long-lasting and less wasteful. LED bulbs consume much less electricity and can save around £30 a year. Also, simply turn the lights off when leaving a room, as £20 can be saved.
Bleed your radiators
Radiators need to be bled when there is air trapped inside, preventing air circulation – cold at the top but warm at the bottom, making it take longer to heat your home. Receive additional surface heat from your radiators and reduce cold spots. This is easily completed and allows you to heat the rooms in your house more efficiently.
Allow the heat to flow
Do not cover radiators with furniture or clothing, as this will trap heat and reduce heat flow. Ensure there is an adequate gap between furniture and radiators to allow flow.
Monitor your energy usage
Home Energy Monitors allow you to track your energy consumption in real-time and assist you, if and when you need to change how you consume energy.
Making a cuppa
In the UK, we use the kettle very often when making tea and coffee… To save money, only fill your kettle with the amount of water you need, not overfilling the kettle can save at least £11 a year.
Draught-proof your home
Draught-free homes are more comfortable at lower temperatures. Therefore, you can turn the thermostat down, saving you money. Draught-proof your windows, doors, chimney, and floorboards, by investing in a draught box for your letterbox, self-adhesive foam strips, and draught excluders. There are so many cheap draught-proofing options to choose from.
Below we have included a few long term solutions, and although these are more expensive, there is funding available to make these services more affordable once a certain criteria is met.
Upgrade to Grade A rated appliances
If you are looking to replace an appliance, look out for the energy label. This is a simple way to reduce energy bills. The more efficient an appliance is, the less energy is needed to run and therefore, less to pay for.
With Refresh NI, you can install a new grade A rated Condensing Boiler with a Programmer, Room Thermostat, and Thermostatic Radiator Controls. A new A-rated boiler will work at over 90% efficiency, heat your home instantly and save money as less energy is required and lost.
Moreover, upgrading to Energy Efficient appliances allows you to make huge savings, as less energy is required to function compared to an F or G-rated appliance.
- Grade A rated Fridge freezer, save £138.
- Grade A rated Tumble Dryer, save £137.
- Grade A rated Washing Machine, save £69.
- Grade A rated Dishwasher, save £44.
- Grade A rated Built-in-oven, save £37.
Insulate your property
25% of heat is lost through the roof of your home. Insulation provides a barrier that traps warm air inside your home, reducing the amount of heat lost and needed to heat your home. Refresh NI offers both Loft and Cavity Wall insulation, allowing you to keep the heat inside of your home. For a quick short-term fix, you should insulate any exposed hot water pipes and water cylinders.
Generate your electricity with Solar Panels. By installing renewable technology at home, you will reduce your fossil fuel dependence and cut energy bills as you are no longer reliant on energy from the grid. Once you pay for the installation, energy costs are significantly reduced and you may generate more electricity than you need, which can be exported back to the grid. You could receive payments through the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG). This service has an initially high installation price point, however, this service pays for itself many times over. And as the price of electricity continues to rise, the payback period on the installation of solar panels continues to fall.
Refresh NI has over 20 years of industry experience in providing energy-efficient home improvement services including Boiler Replacement, Loft and Cavity Wall Insulation, Appliance Servicing and Repair, and more. An energy-efficient home is a happy home. Make energy-efficient switches today and notice a saving, you will not regret it. We hope we have provided some tips which can help cut your energy bill, these are small changes you can make in your everyday life to make big savings.
Furthermore, there are additional help and resources out there if you are struggling and need help.
- Communicate with your energy provider. Energy companies are obliged to offer customers an affordable payment plan and provide energy credit if needed. Do not be afraid to speak up.
- Do you have an old inefficient boiler? The Northern Ireland Sustainability Energy Programme (NISEP) offers grant funding, allowing you to have the opportunity to receive funding for your energy-efficient home improvement service. For more information on the scheme, click here.
- Cost of Living Support Package that includes one-off payments to those on income-related benefits, disabled claimants, and pensioners.
- Government has measures in place to support households. Including £400 off energy bills for all households, £650 payments for households receiving means-tested benefits with additional payments for pensioners and people receiving disability payments, and a 5p cut to fuel duty.
- There are many charities at hand to provide support such as:
For further information on our services, available grants, or advice on how to reduce your monthly energy bills, get in contact with us.
*The savings figures and information on this page are based on the April 2022 energy price cap. These are being reviewed and will be updated shortly in line with the government’s September decision to freeze average energy bills at £2,500 for two years from October 2022 (Energy Saving Trust).*