Winter brings a lot of good things to our door, but one bad thing that it can bring is the dreaded energy bill. From heating your home to slow cooking a delicious dinner, there are lots of reasons why energy bills go through the roof in the winter, but the good news is, there are ways for Exeter residents to avoid these huge costs.
Know where you’re using energy most
Knowing where you’re using the most energy can help you to cut down the dreaded winter bill. There has been a lot of controversy around smart meters, but they can be a good way to measure how much energy you use each day, so you can see when it peaks. In areas such as Exeter, the arrival of winter means using a tumble dryer instead of hanging clothes outside and taking longer to cook hearty meals. Use your tumble dryer sparingly and try options such as an indoor clothes rail and a dehumidifier instead. Get a slow cooker for things like stew and joints; it costs pennies to run since you aren’t heating a big oven.
If you don’t have a smart meter, you can still work out how much it costs, for example, to run a load of laundry through the tumble dryer. Read your meter before and after you’ve done the drying, then find the cost per unit on your energy bill to calculate the price.
Make some home improvements
There are a number of government schemes to help people make necessary home improvements, such as Help to Buy Windows, who may be able to help you with the cost of double glazing. Simple things like adding some insulation can make a big difference to your energy bills, as well as fixing gaps and cracks, and you should make sure you check areas such as your front door for drafts that can cost you money.
There are lots of eco-friendly things you can add to your home that cut energy bills without you even thinking about it. For example, when your bulbs burn out, you can get energy-efficient light bulbs that are cheap and last for a long time. When it’s time to replace your fridge, dishwasher or other appliances, look at the energy ratings and find one that’s as efficient as possible.
A new boiler can also be a good buy. Again, there are grants available to help with the cost. Your boiler provides both heating and hot water, and if your current model is noisy, unreliable or you’ve noticed energy bills creeping up, it may be time for a new one. While the initial cost can seem pricey, you can save hundreds each year with a new boiler, especially if you live in a detached house. There’s also less chance it’ll breakdown in the middle of winter, leaving you with a cold house and no hot water.
Exeter can often suffer from extremes of weather, from flooding to snow, so it’s important to look after your home and be prepared for anything. By making some improvements that cut your energy bills, you can get through even the iciest winters without emptying your savings.