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Home Energy Saving

Vampire Energy

Leaving lights switched on in an unoccupied room is a clear waste of energy. However, vampire energy is less obvious. It is the energy used by household appliances when they’re left on standby or plugged in but not in use. These appliances slowly suck energy and cost the average household an extra £50-80 a year on energy bills.

Slay your Energy Vampires - switch off appliances, chargers and devices at the plug socket.

Turning power off to appliances will also reduce fire risk. The simple rule - anything with a clock or light on when not in use or that gets warm to the touch will still be sucking energy and costing you money, e.g. microwaves, TV’s, radios/stereos, laptops and mobile phone chargers.

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Save Money

Reducing energy waste helps the environment, whilst saving you money.

As well as cutting vampire energy, you can save money in the home by doing other simple things like:

  • Only boil the water you need in a kettle
  • Only use the washing machine when full
  • Buy energy efficient appliances
  • Insulate your home to stop the heat escaping
  • Don’t leave heating appliances like irons or ovens on for longer than necessary
  • Set your thermostat to around 21 degrees. Turning it up higher won’t heat your home any quicker and overheating your home will cost you money – every extra degree adds 10% to your heating bills
  • Fix dripping taps, especially hot taps as you are wasting the energy used to heat the water as well as the water itself  

Top Tips  

Appliances which heat up like kettles, irons and hair straighteners use a lot more energy than appliances with lights like TV’s or computers.

Try to keep the heat in when cooking (lids on pans or not leaving the oven door open).

Halogen lights are more efficient than old incandescent bulbs but often there are 6 or more in one room compared to one central light.  There are now super efficient LED bulbs to fit most halogen fittings.

Tumble driers use a lot of energy so use free solar power (a washing line on a sunny day).

Invest in a warmer duvet rather than leaving the heating on all night. If you are older, very young or have health concerns it is recommended that you heat your bedroom to at least 18 degrees at night. If your home cools down quickly at night then consider ways to improve your insulation.

Save Energy

The best way to save money on energy is to think about the appliances you use daily. Here are some examples:

Lighting

Lighting typically uses about 18% of the electricity in the home. LED’s (Light Emitting Diodes) are the most efficient bulbs available. They achieve full brightness immediately and have extremely low energy consumption (typical energy saved is 80%). The prices are reducing all the time and but any additional cosy is repaid over their very long lifetime.

Timers

Use timer plugs or devices for heating, hot water and lights if you are at work or out of the house during the day.

Countdown timer plugs turn appliances off after a set amount of time – these can be really useful for things you don’t want to leave on all day or night such as phone chargers.

Freezer facts

Make sure the door closes properly and keep the drawers full to make it efficient. Even filling with scrunched up newspaper is better than empty.

It is thought that a fifth of old freezers may be faulty, where the thermostat does not cycle on and off as normal which means they consume much more electricity than they should.

When buying a new appliance look out for the most energy efficient models which will save you money in the long run. Don’t forget to recycle your old appliances.  

How green is your home? Explore our interactive house for money saving tips and suggestions.