The economic climate is bad for everyone, we don’t need to read it in the newspapers to know that our pennies aren’t stretching as far as we’d like. One of the ways in which we could all reduce our outgoings is by improving and reducing the ways in which we consume energy.
Unplug and go to sleep
There are so many modern appliances that we never switch off any more. Think about the TV, your phone charger, your digital radio, and even the microwave. There’s no need to have them switched on until you need them, yet so many of us leave them on standby. If you plug them into multi-point extension cords, you can easily switch several items off at the same time. Even if you just did that at night, you’d be saving yourself plenty of pounds.
Computers are a big energy user, and they’re particularly easy to leave on all the time, because they can often take quite a while to boot up. This is why they have ‘sleep’ and ‘hibernate’ functions. Knock your computer onto one of these as soon as you’ve finished using it. It doesn’t take as long for it to start up, and you’ve saved yourself some serious energy. You can also set your screensaver to do the same thing after being left alone for 5 minutes or less.
Control your energy
Thermostat control is a big issue. Most of us are used to going around in t-shirts and thin blouses when we’re indoors, but it wasn’t that long ago that we had to wear thick woolly jumpers during winter. Well, that isn’t necessary even in your bid to save energy; knocking down your thermostat by just a single degree will make something like a £50 a year saving. Yes, really.
Ensure your appliances are at the top of their game
There are one or two bigger things that can improve your heating bills. One of these is to install extra insulation in the loft and cavity walls of your home. Many modern houses have been built with a significant cavity in the outer walls, and if this is filled properly with lagging, it can reduce a lot of the heat lost in there. The same goes for the loft. You might think that your loft is already insulated, but a few inches more wouldn’t hurt. You can lay new lagging over old and it will immediately improve your home’s energy consumption.
And finally, your boiler needs to be the most efficient it can be. If it’s older than your teenage children, or you think it might be losing its efficiency already, you might need to replace it sooner than you’d thought. But fear not, there are quite a few schemes in place which are designed to help you out with this.
Reducing your energy bills doesn’t have to be expensive – that would be contrary to the point of doing so in the first place. You can do it for free, and that’s the best price available.
Sakina Murdock is a novelist and web content writer living in the north of England. Although writing is her life, she supplements her interests by rearing geese, walking her dog, feeding her face, and producing the occasional rant. Her blog can be found at http://soulsubsistence.wordpress.com.