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Home energy saving tips

Home energy saving tips

Home » Home energy saving tips

Explore how you can lower your electricity use and reduce your heating needs. Joel Rawson from our Free Information Service gives a quick guide to lower-cost ways of cutting carbon and bills. 



Reduce your heating needs

  • If you have a combi boiler, reduce the flow and hot water temperatures and turn off hot water pre-heat.
  • If you have a system boiler, insulate your hot water cylinder and pipes, check the cylinder thermostat is at no more than 60°C and look into options for reducing flow temperatures.
  • If you’re on a below average income you should be able to get a grant for adding insulation, including for solid walls.
  • To insulate a loft and keep storage space, look for low-cost loft legs/stilts.
  • Fit a water efficient shower head and hot tap aerators (both can be on offer or free from your water company).
  • Shower rather than bath – and try to keep below 5 minutes.
  • Draught-proof windows and doors and other gaps (but check you still have enough ventilation).
  • Use thick, well-fitting curtains and ensure these finish on a shelf or sill above any radiator.
  • Secondary glazing panels will improve old windows when it’s not feasible to replace them.
  • Get good quality heating controls, including the right thermostat and radiator valves so that you only need to heat as much as is necessary in each room.
  • Bleed radiators to reduce cold spots.
  • If you’re on below average income, check about grant funding for upgrading an old heating system.

Lower your electricity bill

  • Turn off lights when you leave a room.
  • Replace old bulbs with LEDs and get the right design and placement of fittings.
  • Only boil what you need in the kettle.
  • Wash clothes at 30°C and whenever possible dry them outdoors to minimise tumble dryer use.
  • Fill the dishwasher before running it.
  • Where possible, switch off electronic appliances at the plug instead of leaving them on standby.
  • Get to know your smart meter and controls to see how they can help you save.

Further advice

Beyond these lower cost measures, CAT can also give further advice for those able to invest more.

A heat pump will greatly reduce carbon emissions – to about 70-80% less than from gas or oil. With good design it should also reduce bills, but will need a bigger upfront investment.

Grant funding is available for most. See for advice on home retrofit plans, heat pumps, solid wall insulation, upgrading windows, ventilation systems, and more.

About the author

Joel Rawson is CAT’s Information Officer, providing free and impartial advice on a wide range of topics related to sustainability. He first came to CAT to volunteer in 2001, and graduated with a CAT Postgraduate Diploma in 2013.

CAT’s free information service

Visit our Free Information webpages for information and advice on a wide range of areas related to homes, buildings, energy and more.


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